Morehead State University

Poster Title

Faculty Members' Perception and Motivation for Engaging in Service Learning

Institution

Morehead State University

Abstract

Service-learning is a form of intentional and experiential learning that incorporates an academic focus with useful skills applied in the workforce. To promote faculty members’ engagement in service-learning, a survey was conducted at a regional public university in eastern Kentucky to examine the faculty’s perceptions and expectations toward this high impact teaching strategy. Eighty-five faculty members (31 males; 54 females) completed a self-created questionnaire (64 items) based on six existing survey-learning evaluation tools. Using a 5-point Likert scale (1 = strongly disagree, 5 = strongly agree), participants were asked to rate factors related to servicelearning such as reasons for involvement, potential benefits and shortcomings of this pedagogy, and perceived support provided by the institution. A series of high Cronbach’s Alpha values (all of them > .912) represented a strong level of reliability on ratings of all Liker items. The results showed that faculty participants highly valued service-learning, since it enhanced student learning and supported community partners. This perceived benefit was also the primary factor driving the participants to be involved in service-learning. Participants also showed support in continuing or beginning a service-learning program in the near future (M = 4.05). However, concerns related to how the adoption of service-learning may impact faculty members’ performance in research and professional service areas were identified. In conclusion, it is believed that service-learning would help students build hands-on experience and networking opportunities for their future employment. Those who were satisfied with their service-learning experience (M = 3.93) tended to perceive the benefits of service-learning highly. The needs for establishing clear policies that reward and encourage faculty members’ engagement in servicelearning were further discussed.

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Faculty Members' Perception and Motivation for Engaging in Service Learning

Service-learning is a form of intentional and experiential learning that incorporates an academic focus with useful skills applied in the workforce. To promote faculty members’ engagement in service-learning, a survey was conducted at a regional public university in eastern Kentucky to examine the faculty’s perceptions and expectations toward this high impact teaching strategy. Eighty-five faculty members (31 males; 54 females) completed a self-created questionnaire (64 items) based on six existing survey-learning evaluation tools. Using a 5-point Likert scale (1 = strongly disagree, 5 = strongly agree), participants were asked to rate factors related to servicelearning such as reasons for involvement, potential benefits and shortcomings of this pedagogy, and perceived support provided by the institution. A series of high Cronbach’s Alpha values (all of them > .912) represented a strong level of reliability on ratings of all Liker items. The results showed that faculty participants highly valued service-learning, since it enhanced student learning and supported community partners. This perceived benefit was also the primary factor driving the participants to be involved in service-learning. Participants also showed support in continuing or beginning a service-learning program in the near future (M = 4.05). However, concerns related to how the adoption of service-learning may impact faculty members’ performance in research and professional service areas were identified. In conclusion, it is believed that service-learning would help students build hands-on experience and networking opportunities for their future employment. Those who were satisfied with their service-learning experience (M = 3.93) tended to perceive the benefits of service-learning highly. The needs for establishing clear policies that reward and encourage faculty members’ engagement in servicelearning were further discussed.