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Proximate outcomes of service-learning among family studies undergraduates


Attitudes in academics, career, civic responsibility, and empowerment were reported before and after 143 undergraduate Family Studies students completed a servicelearning project. Results suggested improved academic and career post-test scores. Civic responsibility and empowerment improved but not significantly. Open-ended responses suggested three additional outcomes: group work, leadership, and empathy. Implications for academic programs focused on engaging students in service-learning projects working with or on behalf of families are discussed.

Service-learning, the integration of classroom instruction and community service, is intended to enhance students’ understanding of course content while promoting a commitment to civic and social responsibility within one’s community (Burnett, Hamel, & Long, 2004). The National Service-Learning Clearinghouse (2009) defined service-learning as “a teaching and learning strategy that integrates meaningful community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience, teach civic responsibility, and strengthen communities.”


Jacobson, J.M., Oravecz, L.M., Falk, A.F., Osteen, P.J. (2011). Proximate Outcomes of Service-Learning Among Family Studies Undergraduates. Family Science Review 16(1), pp. 22-33. 

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Last Updated: 12/12/23