At home and abroad, service-learning opportunities are key to your Otterbein education. From recording oral histories of immigrants for a history course to assisting physically-challenged children in a equine course, you will find a variety of ways to integrate service into your education, no matter what major you choose.
Cornerstones of Service Learning
Involvement in meaningful service to the community.
Services provided must meet a need identified by the community agency,
not the instructor or students. The instructor does not tell the
community agency what problems need to be solved or what work needs to
be done, instead the instructor listens to the issues identified by the
Clearly conceptualized connection
between course objectives (academic learning) and service activities
Services provided must enhance course content. Students should not be
asked to provide service without a clear connection to course content.
Without the connection to course content, students would be performing
volunteerism, which is not academic service-learning.
opportunities for students to synthesize and derive new meanings as
they relate their experiences to course goals and objectives.
Students are engaged in structured synthesis in which they relate their
service experiences to course content. In the synthesis process,
students should be able to articulate how the service clarified,
reinforced, or illustrated course concepts.
Citizenship contribution for students to identify their capacity to be an involved and active citizen within the community.
How can students' awareness of themselves as citizens be increased? How
can students discover the possibility and importance of simultaneously
attending to their needs as individuals and as members of a community?
What means of instruction, readings, activities, and service can be
provided for student to increase their problem-based learning,
collaborative learning, multiculturalism and diversity, civic awareness,
and social responsibility?
Preparing students for service.
Otterbein prepares students for service-learning, civic engagement, and direct volunteerism by hosting poverty and immigration simulations. For more information about using simulations to train students for civic engagement, see Dr. Melissa Kesler Gilbert's blog on NASPA's Lead Initiative website: From SIM to the City: Using Simulations to Prepare Students for Civic Engagement