In Community-Based Learning, students learn how to apply ideas, theories, and models to social issues in a practical context while gaining insights from practitioners in community-based organizations.
Service-Learning, a type of Community-Based Learning, is a pedagogical method that enables students to apply course concepts to a “real life” experience that meets a community need and to reflect upon all aspects. It involves student work generally with disadvantaged and under-served individuals or groups. Course objectives and student community work are fundamentally integrated throughout the semester. The basic aim of Service-Learning is two-fold: first, that students’ service will heighten the understanding of central academic themes, goals, or subject matter in their courses; second, that the academic course content will facilitate students’ ability to reflect in deep and meaningful ways on their experiences as agents of social justice.
Mission and Vision:
The mission of the Center for Community-Based Learning is to incorporate direct community service within the academic experience at Canisius, principally through the pedagogical method of service-learning. Through service, students are given the opportunity to live out the cornerstones of the Jesuit mission and values.
Canisius students will be transformed by a meaningful service-learning experience to become men and women with and for others, striving to do more (magis), and to promote social justice. Students will be able to reflect upon and express how the reciprocal relationships between academics and service experiences have helped them to increase their awareness of the needs of others.
Learning Goals and Objectives:
- Goal 1: Complement traditional academic methods of instruction with Service-Learning experiences that put students' course curriculum into practice
- Objective 1: The Center for Community-Based Learning demonstrates how Service-Learning has a real connection to the academic course in which it is incorporated by offering Service-Learning experiences that are appropriate for the particular course
- Objective 2: Continue to work with each academic school at Canisius to require that students take at least one course with a Service-Learning requirement over the four year course of study
- Goal 2: The Service-Learning pedagogical method supports the Jesuit mission and its values
- Objective 1: Show that Service-Learning allows students to practice the cornerstones of the Jesuit mission and values: being a man or woman for others, magis, cura personalis(care of the person), promoting social justice through community engagement, using one's education to initiate positive change in the world, and finding God in all things.