July 1, 2015

For Faculty

What is Community Engaged Scholarship?

“[Engaged Scholarship] seeks to facilitate a more active and engaged democracy by bringing affected publics into problem-solving work in ways that advance the public good with and not merely for the public.” — New England Resource for Higher Education

This section is intended to offer faculty members resources and information to assist in developing relationships to local and extended community members and organizations, to identify ways that their academic work can be further informed and useful to those communities, and to engage undergraduate students in relevant experiential opportunities

 

 

Important Principles of Community-Engaged Scholarship:

Reciprocity

A key element in community engagement where the community ultimately controls the service provided.  The community determines the needs and then the tasks are set.  Through reciprocity, students develop a sense of belonging and responsibility as a community member.  On the other hand, community members that are being assisted learn how to take responsibility for their needs, and–in a way–service-learning is empowering them.  Reciprocity, thus, creates a mutual relationship-building experience between the community members and the students, between the university and the community itself, and between faculty/service-learning staff and community partner organizations.

 

Asset-based Approaches to Partnering

Asset-based approach to community engagement assumes that communities have the ability to create sustainable growth from within that is internally-focused and relationship driven.  Solutions come from people and organizations within community itself, and university-community partnerships consist of co-creators and co-learners rather than seeing the university as the holders of knowledge and the community as merely recipients of service in need of outside assistance.  This fosters relationships that are less hierarchical.

 

 

Click here for relevant literature on community engagement scholarship.