June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
Community Engagement Division
23.596.1 - 23.596.18
Faculty Perspectives on Service-Learning in Engineering Education: Challenges and Opportunities Service-learning is a teaching method in which students participate in organized serviceactivity for academic credit to meet identified community issues, with reflection by the studentson their service experience to further their understanding of course content. Over the past twodecades, service-learning has proliferated in higher education as a viable teaching and learningmethod. The pedagogy continues to gain momentum, and many colleges and universities in theUnited States have designed their engineering curriculum with hands on activities, includingservice-learning. Nevertheless, despite the curriculum overhaul, and increase in service-learningcourses in engineering, there has been limited study to evaluate the experiences of facultymembers that integrate service-learning in their courses. This study investigates how engineering faculty across different schools and departmentsdesign their service-learning courses. A qualitative research method based on direct facultyinterviews is used to make sense of their first-hand experiences and the ways that they intersect.Specifically, thirty interviews were conducted with engineering service-learning practitioners toexplore their interests, challenges, and impact of service-learning. Analysis of the interviewreveals 1) faculty members who are passionate about service-learning tend to play a leading rolein promoting service-learning within their institution; 2) faculty’s primary interest in integratingservice-learning is predominantly motivated by their teaching and student learning; 3) thechallenges that faculty encounter is related to course design, resource limitations, increase inworkload, and lack of adequate support from their institutions. The discussion focuses on theareas that appear to limit the effectiveness of service-learning; limitations and directions forfuture research are identified.
Tucker, B. G., & Kazmer, D. O., & Pierrakos, O., & Swan, C., & Bielefeldt, A. R., & Paterson, K., & Soisson, A. (2013, June), Faculty Perspectives on Service-Learning in Engineering Education: Challenges and Opportunities Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--19610
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