About Academic Service Learning

The Head, Heart and Hand of the Panuska College of Professional Studies: Service Learning/Civic Engagement

The Panuska College of Professional Studies, in keeping with the mission of this University, is committed to a program of academic service learning, which provides a link between community service and academic study. Students learn and develop by participating in thoughtfully organized service that is conducted in and meets the needs of the community. Academic Service learning is integrated into and enhances students' curriculum by providing structured time for students to reflect on their service experience. The service experience is an effective strategy for achieving enrichment and introducing the student to the academic, social and civic needs of diverse groups of people. Through this program, students in the Panuska College of Professional Studies complete academic service-learning experiences as a requirement for undergraduate graduation.

"Service, combined with learning, adds value to each and
transforms both."
(Honnet & Poulsen, 1989)

What happens when undergraduate and graduate students utilize their classroom knowledge into reflective action?   In the Panuska College of Professional Studies, academic service-learning is a central component to undergraduate and graduate education in a professional field. The opportunities to share ones talent with the community benefit not only the recipient but also have an impact on professional growth.  In 2008, The University of Scranton was recognized for a Carnegie Classification of Civic Engagement due to many of the programs in the Panuska College of Professional Studies.

Academic Service-Learning is an experimental education approach grounded in the concept or idea of "reciprocal learning." The concept of reciprocal learning refers to the ideas that learning flows from service activities. In other words, those who provide service and those who receive it "learn" from experience. Academic Service-learning is only fully realized when both the providers and recipients of a service benefit from the activities. "Service-Learning" occurs when there is a balance between learning goals and service outcomes (Sigmon, 1979).