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650: Service Learning

Service Learning allows students to apply theories and information gained in WGSS and related courses in community work settings. It should not duplicate any other regularly available course. It should include both an academic and a service component. Students do not get paid for providing this service to the community. The WGSS Dept will provide a contract that the student, faculty member, and community contact will review prior to beginning the student's service.

Before the Semester Starts

Before the semester starts, the student should identify an agency at which to work. You might already be volunteering at the agency. If not, you might be able to identify opportunities for volunteering at the following sources:

Identify two supervisors: an agency supervisor (who will supervise and evaluate your work at the agency) and a WGSS faculty supervisor (who will supervise the academic portion of your work and assign a grade).

The agency supervisor should write a brief statement outlining your responsibilities at the agency. The faculty supervisor should receive a copy of this statement.

You and the faculty supervisor write and sign a contract specifying what you will do at the agency, what academic work you will do (reading materials and written work relevant to your service), how often you and the faculty supervisor will meet during the semester, and how you will be graded. Generally, students should expect to work approximately 9 hours a week for a 3 credit hour course (consisting of 13 weeks/semester).

This means that students are expected to work at an agency 117 hours/semester (9 hrs/wk x 13 wks) and conduct academic work for an additional 39 hours (3 hrs/wk x 13 wks).

During the Semester

You would provide service to the agency, meet with the faculty supervisor, and do the academic work specified in the contract.

At the End of the Semester

You ask the agency supervisor to send a letter or email to the faculty supervisor summarizing and evaluating your work.

You turn in all academic work specified in the contract.

The faculty supervisor then assigns a grade.


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