By Dan Butin
This publication offers a innovative research of the increase and enlargement of the neighborhood engagement stream ordinarily and the service-learning box in specific.
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Additional resources for Service-Learning in Theory and Practice: The Future of Community Engagement in Higher Education
It is used by a substantial number of faculty across an increasingly diverse range of academic courses; administrative ofﬁces and centers are devoted to promoting its use; it is prominently cited in presidents’ speeches, on institutional homepages, and in marketing brochures. Yet as the latest Wingspread statement (Brukardt et al. 2004) put it: “The honeymoon period for engagement is over; the difﬁcult task of creating a lasting commitment has begun” (4). For underneath the surface, the servicelearning movement has found its institutionalization within higher education far from secure.
An Antifoundational Perspective on Service-Learning An antifoundational perspective on service-learning embraces what Dewey (1910) termed a “forked-road” situation of thoughtfulness to foster doubt concerning the normalcy and neutrality of our seemingly commonsensical view of the world. An antifoundational perspective references the philosophical movement of pragmatist antifoundationalism articulated by, among others, Richard Rorty (1989) and Stanley Fish (1985, 1999). This position argues that there is no neutral, objective, or contentless “foundation” by which we can ever know the “truth” unmediated by our particular condition.
Furco (2002) has developed a rubric for viewing the institutionalization of service-learning. The rubric works as a road map that may be followed by individuals and institutions committed to embedding service-learning throughout their campuses, and it works as a formal or informal assessment mechanism to gauge the progress along the institutionalization path. Furco operationalizes institutionalization across ﬁve distinct dimensions “which are considered by most servicelearning experts to be key factors for higher education service-learning institutionalization” (1): (1) philosophy and mission; (2) faculty support and involvement; (3) student support and involvement; (4) community participation and partnerships; and (5) institutional support.