Service Learning Concept In Nursing Education and Its Goals

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Goals of Service Learning Concept In Nursing Education

Service Learning Concept In Nursing Education and Its Goals

Service Learning Concept In Nursing Education, Service Learning For Developing Values, Cultural Competence, Social Responsibility, and Global Awareness, What Is Service Learning, Service Learning In Nursing Institute and Goal of Institutes.

What Is Service Learning

    Service learning evolves from a philosophy of education that emphasizes active learning that meets a course objective while also directed toward a goal of social responsibility and civic engagement. Service learning is not merely volunteerism, nor is it a substitute for a field experience or practicum that is a normal part of a course. 

    Service learning is not the same as a nursing clinical experience because the focus of the activity is on meeting both the needs of the host community as well as those of the nursing curriculum. However, student learning is not ignored. 

    Service learning offers a way in which students can meet learning objectives, as well as develop leadership skills, cultural competence, and a sense of civic responsibility congruent with the tenets of social justice and social change (Foli, Braswell, Kirkpatrick, & Lim, 2014 ; Gillis & MacLellan, 2013). 

    Both the recipient and the student benefit from the experience. Service learning is an educational experience in which students participate in a service activity that meets the needs of multiple stakeholders in the professional and community environment within the framework of a specific credit bearing course. 

    Service learning focuses on developing social values rather than providing a discrete type of experiential education. Service learning is also defined as a way of connecting academic learning with service; It provides concrete opportunities for students to learn new skills, think critically, and test new roles in situations that encourage risk taking and reward competence. 

   Service learning is a component of broader educational goals to promote civic engagement). Civic engagement involves individual and collective actions to address areas of societal concern. Civic engagement may include service learning projects as well as community focused faculty research. 

    Like service learning, civic engagement involves structured activities that require the student to work with a community to solve a problem, but unlike service learning, the focus of the activity is to promote civic responsibility and development for citizenship.

    Often the terms service learning and experiential learning are used interchangeably; However, they are distinct entities. Experiential learning includes hands on work and has the learning of work-related skills as its major goal. Traditional nursing clinical experiences are an example of experiential learning. 

    In contrast, service learning involves work that meets current community needs, has as one of its goals the fostering of “a sense of caring for others,” and includes structured time for reflection (Bailey, Carpenter, & Harrington, 2002). Service learning balances the need of the community and the learning objectives of the students. 

    Community agencies are true partners in design, implementation, and evaluation of the experience. Service learning expands the learning environment for students and faculty. It is community based and population focused and therefore provides opportunities for students to act locally to solve social problems (Eads, 1994). Although a number of similarities are present, key differences exist between traditional learning and service learning.

Service Learning Concept In Nursing Education

Service Learning For Developing Values, Cultural Competence, Social Responsibility, and Global Awareness

   For more than two decades, agencies and commissions concerned with higher education and preparation of the professions (American Association of Colleges of Nursing, 2008a; Campus Compact, 2001; National Service Learning Clearinghouse, 2010; Pew Health Professions Commission, 1998) have recommended that educational programs include experiences that require civic engagement and community involvement. 

    Institutions of higher education and their schools of nursing are therefore seeking opportunities for students to develop moral judgment, civic responsibility, cultural competence, and global awareness, in addition to the basic professional skills set forth in the curriculum. 

    Service learning, a structured component of the curriculum in which students acquire social values through service to individuals, groups, or communities, is one way to provide opportunities for students to develop these values. Service offers opportunities for learning that cannot be obtained any other way. 

    As such, a service experience may be one of the first truly meaningful acts in a student's life. Service learning uses reflective learning to connect learning with students' thoughts and feelings in a deliberate way, creating a context in which students can explore how they feel about what they are thinking, and what they think about how they feel. 

    As it does so, it becomes an integral part of students' education. This topic explains how service learning can contribute to these outcomes in nursing curricula.

Service Learning In Nursing Institute and Goal of Institutes

   Colleges and universities may engage in service learning differently because of different institutional missions and traditions. Some universities embrace service learning as a philosophy, some as part of their spiritual mission. 

    Others embrace it as part of their commitment to civic responsibility or as a way to foster community partnerships. Regardless of how universities embrace service learning, it must do the following:

1. Be connected to program and course learning outcomes and promote learning

2. Be experiential

3. Allow students to engage in activities that address human and community needs via structured opportunities for student learning and development

4. Provide time for guided reflection in discussion, writing, or media

5. Develop a sense of caring, social responsibility, global awareness, and civic engagement

6. Involve activities that have real meaning for the participants and promote deeper learning

7. Address problems that are identified by the community and require problem solving

8. Promote collaborative learning and teamwork

9. Embrace the concept of reciprocity between the learner and the person, organization, or community being served Service learning may be a separate course within the college curriculum or integrated as a thread throughout multiple courses. The trend is toward the latter.

    Faculty members intentionally and strategically plan to incorporate service-learning experiences as part of a course. When it is integrated into existing courses, it is important that it not be added as an “additional” course requirement. Instead, it should be a learning activity that replaces one or more learning activities previously used. 

    Credit should be given for the learning and its relation to the course, not for the service alone. The service activity must match course content and enhance learning by allowing application of the theoretical principles taught in the classroom setting. 

    At some colleges and universities, courses with a service learning component are identified in the course catalog as having an opportunity for service learning. At the same time, some colleges allow students to select an alternate learning activity if they do not wish to participate.

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