Palm Beach Atlantic University’s QEP is Reach Out, Reach In, Reach Up: Intellectual, Spiritual, and Character Development of Students through Service-Learning. The purpose of the project is to foster Christ-focused development of students through service-learning coursework that integrates academic learning and community application.
Service-learning efforts are focused on courses within individual majors. Both entry-level and upper-level courses were selected within eleven majors: Business, Communication, Dance, Elementary Education, Global Development, Human Performance and Sport, Leadership, Ministry, Nursing, Pharmacy, and Psychology. This approach has two advantages. First, it ensures that the QEP Implementation Team includes a cross-section of students, regardless of their classification when the QEP begins. Second, for students who enroll in both the entry level and upper level service-learning courses, it will provide a continuum of reflection and community-based application throughout their major coursework.
Training, resources, and incentives are provided to support the introduction and implementation of service-learning into current courses. Training will be provided by our Faculty Service-Learning Fellow. Resources will range from syllabus writing support to logistics for collaboration with outside community partners, an extensive and well researched pool of non-profit organizations across South Florida.
ASSESSMENT OF THE PROGRAM
QEP assessment will include the monitoring and collecting of data for four program outcomes and three student learning outcomes. The four program outcomes include increasing awareness and practice of service-learning on campus, enhancing service-learning curriculum, providing faculty training and support, and monitoring the impact of service-learning on student retention, performance and development. A few of the methods of assessment of the program learning outcomes are QEP event attendance tracking, faculty surveys, related items from NSSE/FSSE assessments, tracking of service-learning presentations and publications, Community Partner Feedback Survey, tracking of GPA and retention, and the National Assessment for Service and Community Engagement (NASCE).
The student learning outcomes will include assessment of intellectual, spiritual, and character development. By responding to writing prompts, students in service-learning courses will reflect on the experience prior, during and after the service-learning experience. Raters will assess the reflections through holistic scoring using a critical reflection rubric in the areas of intellectual, character, and spiritual development. Other assessments of the student learning outcomes will include a student participant survey, observations of empathy, and SpiritPulse.
For additional information about the University’s Service-Learning QEP, please contact Carolanne M. Brown, Assistant Provost for Accreditation and Assessment at firstname.lastname@example.org.