Service-learning is embedded in the CSUCI mission statement and defined by the Center for Community Engagement as a high-impact teaching and learning strategy in which meaningful service addresses a critical societal and/or social justice issue and is a critical component of course curriculum and assessment of student learning. It is characterized by critical reflection and a collaborative partnership among faculty, students, and community, with a focus on both student learning and community impact**. 

Service-learning is significantly different from other forms of experiential education in that it:

  • offers a balance between service and learning objectives
  • places an emphasis on reciprocal learning
  • focuses on the development of civic skills
  • addresses community identified concerns
  • involves community in the service-learning design and implementation
  • requires collaboration with the community
  • enables students to critically reflect on their own values and beliefs

High Quality Service-Learning

High-quality service-learning courses consist of six essential elements:

  • Reciprocal Partnership(s)
  • Student Community Involvement Benefits the Common Good
  • Academically Relevant Community Involvement
  • Civic Learning Goals
  • Critical Reflection
  • Assessment of Learning

**Adopted from the CSU Office of the Chancellor, Center for Community Engagement's definition of Community Engaged Learning.

Each year over 1,800 CSUCI students enroll in a service-learning course providing on average over 40,000 hours of service to the community. Their service addresses critical societal and/or social justice issues  while learning how communities develop solutions and create change. These service-learning experiences and contributions are invaluable to our students’ academic and civic education.

To learn more about the Center for Community Engagement's service-learning program, please contact Pilar Pacheco, Director at or Jennifer Raymond, Community Partner Coordinator at

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