Assistance Offered for Faculty Who Want to Add Service-Learning to Courses

 

Interested in adding a service-learning component to your course, but unsure how to do it?

The provost’s office now has resources to help.

Under the auspices of the Office of the Provost, UT Service-Learning has been created to support and increase the level of course-based service-learning across campus. The program’s office is in 217 Greve Hall.

Kelly Ellenburg, formerly with the Tennessee Teaching and Learning Center, is the campus coordinator for service-learning. She is working with the academic colleges and entities, as well as other offices across campus, to develop resources to aid faculty and community organizations in offering service-learning opportunities.

Ellenburg said the program’s website serves as a central point of contact for those who want to engage in service-learning. It also includes best practices information, resources for faculty to help find a community partner and forge a memorandum of collaboration with that partner, and a comprehensive guide for service-learning community partners.

The office can also provide information about risk management, and Ellenburg can arrange low-cost liability insurance for students who will be working with vulnerable populations.

“One of our goals is to support faculty and community partners in designing and implementing service-learning projects that are as meaningful as possible for all involved,” Ellenburg said. “The website has a lot of information that can help, but we also invite faculty members and potential community partners to come in and talk to us about the process.”

Joint consultations with the Tennessee Teaching and Learning Center or Office of Information Technology are available as service-learning planning intersects with course design and instructional technology.

“We want to offer a holistic set of services for faculty and community partners, which involves a lot of collaboration,” Ellenburg said.

Ellenburg said she plans to begin tracking the amount of service-learning offered at UT in order to establish a baseline for growth. This will involve considering ways to designate courses with a service-learning component. She is also developing a list of community partners who can offer service-learning outlets, and is continuing to work with administrators to find ways to recognize and reward faculty for incorporating it into their classes.

C O N T A C T :

Kelly Ellenburg (865-974-9577,servicelearning@utk.edu)

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