Professional Development
Academic Service-Learning 101

Professors Meg Tarafdar and Sharon Ellerton describe the importance and foundations of service-learning. They also explain the benefits to both students and faculty and raise some challenges to integrating service-learning in classrooms.
Using Reflection Activities in Your Classes

Professor Meg Tarafdar defines reflection and ways to integrate reflection into the classroom.
Service Learning at QCC

Various faculty speak about the impact of service-learning on the campus and community at large. The video demonstrates how faculty incorporate service-learning into their curriculum.
Getting started – Learning Outcomes & Student Reflections

Students strengthen their learning when they reflect on their service-learning activities.

Service-Learning reflections are based on the Service-Learning learning outcomes:

  • Students will be able to relate what they learned in the classroom to their service-learning project.
  • Students will be able to recognize their capability to impact society.
  • Students will demonstrate confidence in their application of workplace skills.

Download prompts for student use BEFORE they do their service-learning project.  

Download prompts for student use AFTER they do their project.

Download the rubric for the reflections written AFTER the project. (link above)


Getting started – Designing a service-learning project

Service-learning is one of QCC’s high-impact practices. Service-learning reinforces academic learning,
addresses community needs, and instills civic responsibility. Through analysis and reflection, participants
identify and absorb what they have learned.

Grades for service-learning are based upon student reflections.

"Getting Started with Service-Learning"  summarizes the important points to consider.
"Process for Developing a Service-Learning Project"  is a useful flow chart of the project planning process.

Guide me through project planning:

I want to skip the guide and go directly
to the Project Form:

Incorporating service-learning into your syllabus

Please describe the project in your syllabus in enough detail so that your students will understand what they will be doing, the rationale for the project and the schedule of how it will fit into the semester. 

Please identify the course and gen ed objectives that will be met through the project.

Please also identify the community partner, if known, and the need of the partner that the project will address/meet.

QCC Faculty Publications on Service-Learning

Schwartz, Jeffrey L. "Preparing High School Students for College While Training Engingeering Students in 'Soft Skills.' 2016 IEEE Integrated STEM Education Conference (ISEC), (March 2016).

Maloy, Jennifer and Carroll, Julia. “Critical Reflection on the Road to Understanding the Holocaust: A Unique Service-Learning Project at a Two-Year College.” Teaching English in the Two-Year College (May 2014): 369-383. http://www.ncte.org/library/NCTEFiles/Resources/Journals/TETYC/0414-may2014/TETYC0414Critical.pdf

Lizzul, Isabella; Bradley, Michael; Di Giorgio, Liz; Aikas, Rose Marie; Murolo, Sebastian and Zinger, Lana. “The Impact of Service Learning on Academic Knowledge, Personal Growth, and Civic Engagement in Community College Students.” The Journal for Civic Commitment no. 23 (March 2015). http://ccncce.org/articles/the-impact-of-service-learning-on-academic-knowledge-personal-growth-and-civic-engagement-in-community-college-students/

Ellerton, Sharon; Di Meo, Cristina; Pantaleo, Josephine; Kemmerer, Arlene; Bandziukas, Mary; and Bradley, Michael. “Academic Service Learning Benefits Diverse, Urban Community College Students.” The Journal for Civic Commitment no. 23 (March 2015). http://ccncce.org/articles/academic-service-learning-benefits-diverse-urban-community-college-students/

Rochford, Regina A. and Hock, Susan. “Writing: A Tool for Historic Preservation and Civic Engagement.” The Journal for Civic Commitment no. 21 (March 2014). http://ccncce.org/articles/writing-a-tool-for-historic-preservation-and-civic-engagement/

Service-Learning at the American Community College (October 2014), edited by Dr. Amy Traver and Dr. Zivah Perel-Katz.  Includes four chapters by QCC faculty and staff:

  • Service-Learning and Immigrant-Origin Community College Students: How and Why Project Design Matters; Amy E. Traver, Zivah Perel Katz, and Michael Bradley
  • Service-Learning: A Vehicle for Enhancing Academic Performance and Retention among Community College Developmental Reading and Writing Students; Regina A. Rochford
  • Service-Learning as a Pedagogical Tool for Career Development and Vocational Training; Sharon Ellerton, Cristina Di Meo, Arlene Kemmerer, Josephine Pantaleo, Mary Bandziukas, Michael Bradley, and Victor Fichera
  • Expanding Faculty Participation and Research in Academic Service-Learning at a Community College; Diane B. Call

Schwartz, Jeffrey. (2013) Extended Abstract–Teaching Computer Programming to a Diverse Student Body Through Service Learning.  First Year Engineering Experience Conference (FYEE).

Rochford, Regina, A. (2013) Service learning for remedial reading and writing students. Community College Journal of Research and Practice, 37(5).

Zinger, Lana and Sinclair, Alicia. (2010). Using Service Learning As A Method of Transferring Health Knowledge.
Contemporary Issues in Education Research. 3(5): 21-25.

Issues in Engaged Scholarship (July 2011), features four articles by QCC faculty and staff, including:

  • Elizabeth DiGiorgio, Department of Art and Design. Picture Me in College: A Portrait Project with Homeless Children and Teens.  
  • Arlene Kemmerer, Department of Academic Literacy; Josephine Pantaleo, Academic Literacy Learning Center; and Roseanne Vogel, Department of Speech Communication and Theater. Turning on Students with High-Impact Strategies.
  • Joan Petersen, Department of Biological Sciences. Establishing a Microbiology Honors Tract to Engage Health Science Majors in Service-Learning Activities.  
  • Simran Kaur, Department of Biological Sciences. Promoting a Sustainable Lifestyle to Elementary School and College Students.

Resources for faculty considering publishing or presenting on service-learning (including peer-reviewed journals):