Academic Service-Learning Faculty Handbook

Welcome to the Academic Service-Learning Faculty Handbook, your comprehensive resource for planning, implementing, reflecting, and assessing service-learning courses. Whether you're seasoned or new to service-learning pedagogy, this handbook is designed to support you at every stage of your journey.

Please take the time to review the following resources thoughtfully. They have been carefully curated to equip you with the knowledge and strategies necessary to create impactful service-learning courses that promote academic excellence, civic engagement, and community empowerment.

Types of Service-Learning

Academic service-learning is 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.
Direct Service-Learning:

Face-to-face service projects in which the students’ service directly impacts individuals/agencies who receive the service from the students.


  • Tutoring at local schools or after-school programs 
  • Conducting art/music/dance lessons for youth
  • Giving presentations on violence and drug prevention
  • Share accounting or finance skills with a non-profit organization
  • Teach computer skills to children or senior citizens
  • Hold language classes for community groups
  • Conduct historical studies in the community 
  • Help with Special Olympics
  • Teach sports skills clinics 

Indirect Service-Learning:

Working on current issues or agency projects that have clear benefits, but are not necessarily in direct contact with the agency or individual.


  • Compiling a town history

  • Environmental study for a local government or community organization

  • Removing invasive plants and restoring ecosystems in preserved areas for public use

  • Test air, soil or water quality levels 

Advocacy Service-Learning:

Educating others about topics of public interest–projects that aim to create awareness and action on issues that impact the community.


  • Planning and putting on public forums on topics of interest in the community
  • Conducting public information campaigns on topics of interest or local needs
  • Working with elected officials to draft legislation to improve communities

Faculty Development Series