Community Service Learning

Teach with Service-Learning

The principles of service-learning are similar to that of experiential education, in that students are most apt to retain course content when they are given an opportunity to actually see the discipline functioning in "the real world," so to speak. Each discipline taught at the university level can be made relevant to the complexities of our communities and, indeed ought to be made relevant if there is not a direct and obvious correlation between its theoretical base and today's social, political, economic and even scientific interactions. It is the very relevancy of the disciplines taught at Willamette University that gives the pedagogy of service-learning a natural foothold in our diverse courses.

Create a Service-Learning Course

Learn what it takes to design a new SL course or to incorporate service into a course you are already teaching!

Take Advantage of Our Service-Learning Resources

Download Course Tools

Whether you're looking for time sheets, partnership agreements, or reflection models, we have what you need right here.

Apply for a Service-Learning Assistant

Receive funding for a student leader who can assist you in incorporating service in your course!

Apply for a Service-Learning Course Designation

Increase the visibility of service-learning at Willamette by applying today! (A list of SL-designated courses can be found here.)

Get inspired

Review Past WU Service-Learning Syllabi

Download sample syllabi and connect with WU faculty who have taught with service in the past!

Find Course and Partnership Models by Discipline

We have links to national resource databases that include sample syllabi and partnership agreements in nearly every field!

Become a Resource

There are many ways to engage in service on campus. Interested in advising a TaB group or a service-based club? Learn more here!

Patricia Varas, Professor of Spanish

On incorporating service-learning in her Spanish Composition course:

Professor VarasService-learning fosters an environment of respect and openness in the classroom. Through it the students become aware that we are not value free in our judgments and that language acquisition is part of learning a culture.


David Craig, Professor of Biology

On integrating service-learning in his General Ecology course:

Professor CraigMy birdhouse community project is not about teaching bird names, providing habitat, or how to define a niche; it is about learning about the relationships, connections, and interdependence every organism has with one another. Service-learning is recognizing that every person is a life-time learner and most are hungry for knowledge. As a scientist I feel a special responsibility to make my technical expertise available to people outside of my lab or classroom. Outreach keeps me grounded in my scholarly work. When I can't easily explain what I do to a 7th grader, a 17 year old, and a 70 year old, then I probably don't really know what I am doing!