Service Learning Institute

Key Elements of Service Learning


  • The service and learning must be worthwhile and valuable for both the student and the community. There must be reciprocity between the server and those served.


  • Intentional, systematic reflection about the experience must take place in order to maximize the benefit of service learning experiences.
  • Reflection within the context of the service experience encourages introspection of other aspects of the student's life.
  • Reflection is the critical process to link service and academic learning objectives.


  • Service activities need to be directly related to the student's academic learning objectives in order to strengthen student's critical thinking.


  • A priority is placed on involving a broad cross-section of students working in diverse settings and with diverse populations within the community.
  • Service helps students overcome stereotypes and fears, and develop skills as multicultural community participants.