Service-Learning Program

Welcome to York College's Service-Learning Program

Information about the initiative to provide York students and faculty with opportunities to apply classroom education to the greater community.

What is Service-Learning?

Service-Learning at York College is a teaching and learning method that engages and encourages students to make meaningful connections between course content and real-life experiences through service and community-based education. York College's aim is to deepen student learning while increasing students' level of civic engagement, responsibility, and social justice. Service-learning has a positive impact on student learning outcomes, civic engagement, and retention.

Service-learning can be applied across all subjects and academic levels; it can involve a single student or a group of students, a classroom or the entire school. Students build character and become active participants as they work with others in the school and community to create service projects in areas such as education, public safety, and the environment, to name a few.

What Service-Learning is Not.

Because service-learning is intrinsically tied to academic coursework, it is not the same as other common forms of community engagement, such as volunteerism, co-ops, and internships, or traditional community service. As a result, academic credits are earned for the learning portion, not for the service.

What should I do if I'm interested in taking a service-learning course?

The first thing to do is check with the department in which you would like to take a service-learning course to see if there are any "experiential learning" classes being offered in the semester you would like to take such a course.

What should I do if I'm interested in teaching a service-learning course?

Faculty should consult our Resources for Faculty page. There you will find links to sample syllabi for multiple disciplines, a toolkit on how to develop a course and obtain the requisite service agreements when having students serve off-site. You will also find the course criteria form created by York's Service-Learning Advisory Board, which seeks to standardize the elements of all courses approved by the Board.