Student Preparation and Support

4. Student Preparation and Support

Students must be properly prepared for the service activity, whether in class or through electronic interaction (such as RU Connected), and this preparation must be included in the course plan. Student preparation should include a description of the service activity; a discussion of safety issues and risk factors involved in the service activity; the time allocation for the service activities; a detailed schedule for service activities; a discussion of the importance of cultural sensitivity when engaging in the service activity; training for the tasks involved in the service activity; and an introduction to the work of the community partner.

Basic Preparation of Students:

  • Clearly explain to the students the unique features of a service-learning course and how the service component fits into the course expectations.
  • Clearly explain to the students how the service activity has been designed to meet identified goals and needs of the community partner.
  • Introduce students to the fundamentals of respectful engagement with people who come from different backgrounds, classes, races, religious or cultural groups.
  • It is of paramount importance that students understand the necessity of maintaining the confidentiality of sensitive information (including photographs or recordings) that students might learn or gain from or about the community partners.
  • Students must be made aware that the community partners rely on student’s service hours to help meet their goals and needs. Students should be reminded that they must be dependable and provide the community partner with sufficient notice if they will not be able to make their scheduled time for a planned service activity.

For further and more detailed support on how to properly prepare students for meaningful service activity please contact the Community Engagement Division for further resources and support in training students before they undertake a service activity.

Last Modified: Wed, 24 Aug 2016 12:10:11 SAST