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Assessment of Service Learning

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2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

Assessing, Developing, and Enhancing the Engineering Experiential Education Experience

Tagged Division

Cooperative & Experiential Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

22.258.1 - 22.258.21



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Paper Authors


Mysore Narayanan Miami University

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Dr. Mysore Narayanan obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Liverpool, England in
the area of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. He joined Miami University in 1980 and
teaches a wide variety of electrical, electronic and mechanical engineering courses. He has been
invited to contribute articles to several encyclopedias and has published and presented dozens of
papers at local, regional , national and international conferences. He has also designed,
developed, organized and chaired several conferences for Miami University and conference
sessions for a variety of organizations. He is a senior member of IEEE and is a member of
ASME, SIAM, ASEE, and AGU. He is actively involved in CELT activities and regularly
participates and presents at the Lilly Conference. He has been the recipient of several Faculty
Learning Community awards. He is also very active in assessment activities and has presented
dozens of papers at various Assessment Institutes. His posters in the areas of Bloom’s
Taxonomy and Socratic Inquisition have received widespread acclaim from several scholars in
the area of Cognitive Science and Educational Methodologies. He has received the Assessment of
Critical Thinking Award twice and is currently working towards incorporating writing
assignments that enhance students’ critical thinking capabilities.

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Assessment of Service Learning & Engineering at Miami University Mysore Narayanan Miami University, OhioAbstract Service-learning has been gaining popularity in engineering disciplines, slowlybut steadily. It is quite important that universities have to adapt to changes in order tomake higher education more effective. Therefore it is apparent that students learn best,when they are provided with an opportunity to utilize their knowledge to help a selectcommunity. Honnet and Poulsen indicate that service to a community adds value to thelearner’s educational accomplishments. At Miami University, which is primarily aliberal arts university, the author prefers to place service learning as a mechanismwherein the student learners shall mentor and guide so as to empower others to helpthemselves. Eyler and Giles are of the opinion that service learning relieves the studentsof the monotony of routine classroom work and learning disengagement. The authorbelieves that service learning helps to rekindle the social consciousness of the studentlearner. Furthermore, the author promotes designing of service-learning programs that canmake a significant impact in the area of social activism. Regardless, since the UnitedStates thrives on a market-driven economy, service-learning course curriculum contentmust be designed with due regard to the applicability of such economic educationalphilosophies. This has been substantiated by Alexander Astin's research for instance. He hasshown that commitment to service tends to be lowest at institutions that place "resourceacquisition" as a top priority. The service-learning opportunities at colleges &Universities should be aimed at the development of the civic education of studentlearners however, the service-learning course must nevertheless be focused on careerpreparation of the college students as well. Furthermore it must be clearly acceptable tothe appropriate accreditation agencies. The Senior Design Project Class, which is atwo-semester long course, with a total of four credit hours, can be viewed as a servicelearning class, depending upon the project chosen by the select student group. It doescontain a substantial amount of education about ethics, ergonomics, economics, sociologyand liberal education principles, in addition to rigorous engineering subject matter. Thestudent groups are encouraged to appreciate the realities of socio-economic impact oftheir chosen project. In many cases, the project will have to be addressed with a strongwill to succeed and necessarily require coalitions of volunteerism industry sponsoredfunding and donated resources. The objective of a select group of senior design projectstudents is to appreciate the aspect of service and reinforce the reality of viable ethical,ergonomic and economic engineering design. In this paper the author attempts to outline the efforts of the engineeringtechnology department in assessing and promoting service learning at Miami University.

Narayanan, M. (2011, June), Assessment of Service Learning Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--17539

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