Although extant research has demonstrated the benefits of servicelearning for students and the greater community, faculty involvement in service-learning at research-intensive universities remains a challenge. In order to critically explore faculty perceptions of service-learning and to challenge everyday understandings, this study utilizes politically attentive relational constructionism to analyze faculty focus groups. Findings constructed service-learning as facilitating student success, but constrained by self-defined practice. Based on this analysis, transformative possibilities around the perception, practice, and institutionalization of service-learning emerge. Combined, these findings extend research on service-learning by highlighting a research-intensive university as a unique context and proposing ways to overcome service-learning challenges. This study provides pragmatic suggestions for service learning and university administration such as the need for greater administrative support, university-wide buy-in, and the need to reflexively review faculty understanding–and practice–of service-learning.
Pauly, Jessica A.
"Complicating Practice with Success: Service-Learning Perspectives at a Research-Intensive University,"
Kaleidoscope: A Graduate Journal of Qualitative Communication Research:
Vol. 13, Article 2.
Available at: http://opensiuc.lib.siu.edu/kaleidoscope/vol13/iss1/2