Service Learning


What is Service-Learning?

Service-learning is a way of teaching and learning that links course content to "real-life" experiences that center on a community need or issue. Through reflection activities students are given the opportunity to understand what was learned and experienced, and how the community was benefited.

Service-learning is a direct expression of the CI mission and a critical component of the curriculum. Service-learning courses equip students with the knowledge and experience necessary to transform them into future leaders and socially-conscious citizens.

The Center for Community Engagement (CCE) provides resources and support to faculty who are interested in or incorporating service-learning into their course(s). The following resources are available to faculty offering a service-learning course this academic year 2013-2014.

Community Partner Database
Community partners are integral to the service-learning program. Community partners serve as co-educators by providing onsite learning and facilitating reflection activities for CI students. The CCE has committed to a University-Community Partnership model that fosters reciprocal, ongoing relationships built on trust and mutual respect between the University and the community based organization.

Our Community Partner Database allows faculty to learn more about University-approved community partners (i.e. ocommunity-based organizations with whom there is a signed service-learning agreement) and their potential service-learning projects.

Faculty Consultations
The CCE staff is available to discuss community partners, service learning curriculum and projects and service learning resources. Please contact Pilar Pacheco, Associate Director at or 805.437.8851.

Faculty Guidebook
The Faculty Guide to Service-Learning is designed to be a reference tool for faculty involved in service-learning. This guide will provide you with necessary resource for your service-learning course.

Service Learning Course Support Funds
Faculty teaching a service-learning course are eligible to apply for funds up to $500 to support high impact service learning practices and projects by covering essential associated costs. For more information visit:

Conference Registration Funds
The CCE will cover conference registration for faculty to attend or present at a service-learning conference. These funds are offered on a first-come-first served basis. For a list of conference information click here.

Service Learning Livescan Funds
The CCE has limited funds to cover on campus fingerprinting costs for service-learning students working with vulnerable populations; as required by the community partner. This service is offered on a first-come-first served basis. For more information please contact Pilar Pacheco, Associate Director at or 805.437.8851.

Classroom Orientations

The CCE staff will conduct orientations during class or at other pre-arranged times to introduce students to service-learning concepts, methods and purpose. Please contact our office to schedule an appointment at 437.8851.

The Art of Reflection
Reflection  is integral to service-learning because it connects and reinforces in-class work, course readings, and service experiences. It provides an opportunity for students to think critically about service experiences, examine and challenge personal values, beliefs, and opinions, while allowing students to ask questions, share ideas and experiences, challenge current solutions to community issues and develop plans to address community needs.  

Additional reflection resources:

Service-Learning Sylabii Resources
The following are links that provide examples of service-learning syllabi across a wide variety of disciplines.

Resource Library
A collection of books, compact discs, and videos pertaining to service-learning and related topics can be found in our Resource Library, located in Ojai Hall, 1943. Items may be borrowed via campus mail or pick-up. To view the contents of our resource library please go to our service learning webpage at

Publishing Outlets for Service Learning and Community-Based Research

A comprehensive list of publishing outlets for service learning and community based research.