I want to teach a service learning course

Planning a service learning course

Step 1: Preliminaries

  1. Identify the course you want to target for service learning. Recommendation: Focus on one service learning course per semester, especially if you are new to service learning.  Browse past and current service learning courses at Loyola and view examples. You can also view sampe Loyola service learning syllabi here.
  2. Read and review SL course criteria.
  3. Decide whether service learning will be optional or required.  If optional, decide what the non-service learning alternative will be.  Ensure that the two options are roughly equivalent in terms of time and effort. 
  4. Submit the course title for SL designation in LORA by filling out the Course Submission Form.  Courses should be submitted the semester before you intend to teach the course, before registration begins. Check course submission deadlines »

Step 2:  Basic structure & design

  1. List the course's learning objectives. Identify the ones you associate most strongly with service learning. How do you think service learning will contribute to students' achievement of these learning objectives? Rephrase one or two learning objectives to make specific reference to service learning and its role.  Include these objectives on your syllabus.  At least one specific service learning objective is required for all service learning courses and will be included on the course webpage.
  2. Choose a service learning model (project or placement).
  3. Select community partner(s). (Click here for list of currently active service learning placement partners, click here for a list of potential partners  , or click here to request a partnership with a specific agency).  One of the criteria for all service learning courses at Loyola is that service activities must be performed in partnership with an identifiable agency or organization.  All service learning partners must have a signed Memorandum of Understanding on file prior to the commencement of service learning activities.  Faculty members may develop and lead their own partnerships or draw on Loyola's current partner agencies.  Tips for effectively collaborating with community partners »
  4. Decide how much time students will be expected to spend on service learning.  Consider the overall workload for the class and factor service learning time into this total.  Time commitment should be proportional to grading weight. Students are eligible for transcript notations if they document 15 hours of time and effort on a service learning course in a semester. 
  5. Decide on a grading procedure.
  6. You may wish to consult these resources for additional information: 
  7. Find hundreds of sample syllabi from institutions across the country here: http://www.compact.org/syllabi/
    iew sample Loyola service learning syllabi here: http://www.loyno.edu/engage/sample-loyola-service-learning-syllabi
    ee the components of an effective service learning course syllabus.


Step 3: Planning for reflection


Frequently Asked Questions

What is service learning?

Why is service learning important?

Additional Information