Community Engaged Scholarship: More than Service

Laura Littlepage, Clinical Associate Professor, Paul H. O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs, Indiana University, Julie Knapp, Clinical Assistant Professor, Indiana University, Mary Embry, Senior Lecturer, Indiana University,, and Michael Valliant, Director, CITL Service-Learning Program, Indiana University.

Community-engaged scholarship (CES) is the collaborative generation, refinement, conservation, and exchange of mutually beneficial and societally relevant knowledge that is generated in collaboration with, communicated to, and validated by peers in academe and the community (Jordan, 2007).

With CES the faculty member is part of a mutually beneficial partnership with the community that results in scholarship deriving from teaching, discovery, integration, application, or engagement. Community-engaged scholarship differs from service in that community-engaged scholarship integrates engagement with the community into research and teaching activities. Engagement is a feature of these scholarly activities, not a separate activity. Service implies offering one’s expertise and effort to the institution, the discipline, or the community, but it lacks the core qualities of scholarship. Interdependent and synergistic community-academic engagements are reinforced through research, teaching, and service (Jordan, 2007).

This session draws on a Faculty Learning Community at IU Bloomington during the 2019-2020 academic year. Presenters will share what they learned about characteristics of CES, standards of rigor for practicing CES, and the spectrum of expressions of CES with the stated goal of elevating recognition by departments and universities that CES is scholarship, not service, in evaluation, promotion and tenure. This session is open to anyone interested in CES in evaluation, promotion, and tenure, though will most likely benefit community-engaged instructors interested in documenting or presenting community engaged scholarship as part of their case for promotion and tenure. Administrators are strongly encouraged to attend to learn how they can bolster support for community engaged scholars. The session will share insights from tenure track and non-tenure track faculty from various departments at IU Bloomington.

Participants can expect an interactive session, balancing activities designed to foreground personal experience and questions with information sharing.

Community-engaged scholarship (CES) is the collaborative generation, refinement, conservation, and exchange of mutually beneficial and societally relevant knowledge that is generated in collaboration with, communicated to, and validated by peers in academe and the community (Jordan, 2007).

With CES the faculty member is part of a mutually beneficial partnership with the community that results in scholarship deriving from teaching, discovery, integration, application, or engagement. Community-engaged scholarship differs from service in that community-engaged scholarship integrates engagement with the community into research and teaching activities. Engagement is a feature of these scholarly activities, not a separate activity. Service implies offering one’s expertise and effort to the institution, the discipline, or the community, but it lacks the core qualities of scholarship. Interdependent and synergistic community-academic engagements are reinforced through research, teaching, and service (Jordan, 2007).

Our presentation will include a discussion of:

  1. Characteristics of Community Engaged Scholarship
  2. Clarity of Purpose and goals
  3. Adequate preparation and partnership
  4. Appropriate methods and significant results
  5. Reflective critique that is rigorous and peer reviewed
  6. Standards of rigor for practicing CES
  7. Expressions of Community-Engaged Scholarship
  8. The Spectrum of Scholarly Products

The intended audience is community-engaged faculty and administrators who are interested in documenting or presenting community engaged scholarship as part of their case for promotion and tenure. The session will share insights from various departments at IU as well as from tenure track and non-tenure track faculty.

References

Ellison, J. &, Eatman, T. K. (2008). Scholarship in Public: Knowledge creation and tenure policy in the engaged university. Syracuse, NY: Imagining America.

Furco, A.  (2009).  Enhancing institutional engagement:  Redefining community involvement in higher education, Keynote address, Montana Campus Compact; Missoula, MT.

Howard, J.  (1993). Community service learning in the curriculum in J. Howard (ed.), Praxis I: A Faculty Casebook on Community Service Learning. Ann Arbor, MI: Office of Community Service Learning Press, University of Michigan.

Huber, M. T. (1999). Evaluating outreach: The scholarship of engagement for the 21st century. Best Practices in Outreach and Public Service Conference. Pennsylvania State University, PA.

Janke, E. M., & Clayton, P. H. (2012). Excellence in Community Engagement and Community-Engaged Scholarship: Advancing the Discourse at UNCG (Vol. 1). Greensboro, NC: the University of North Carolina at Greensboro 11.

Jordan C, Ed. (2007). Community-engaged scholarship review, promotion & tenure package. Peer Review Workgroup, Community-Engaged Scholarship for Health Collaborative, Community-Campus Partnerships for Health. Peer Review Workgroup. Seattle, WA: Community-Campus Partnerships for Health.

Pelco, L. & Howard, C. (2016). Incorporating Community Engagement Language into Promotion and Tenure Policies: One University’s Journey. Metropolitan Universities. 27. 87. 10.18060/21129.

UNC Greensboro (2014). Honoring the mosaic of talents and stewarding the standards of high-quality community engaged scholarship, 2. Retrieved from https://communityengagement.uncg.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Honoring-the-Mosaic-of-Talents-and-Stewarding-the-Standards-of-High-Quality-Community-Engaged-Scholarship.pdf

Presenters

Laura Littlepage, Clinical Associate Professor, O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs has published extensively on community-based student learning and volunteering and teaches several community-engaged courses.

Julie Knapp, Clinical Assistant Professor, School of Public Health has published on topics related to active learning, classroom design and internships and has taught community engaged courses through the Sustaining Hoosier Communities Program at Indiana University.

Mary Embry, Senior Lecturer, Director of Undergraduate Studies, Eskenazi School of Art, Architecture, and Design, has published on and practices community based student learning and service-learning pedagogy in sustainability and fair trade product development. She leads several international study abroad courses and supports the practice of community engaged learning within the Eskenazi School at Indiana University.

Michael Valliant, Director, CITL Service-Learning Program, supports the practice of community engaged learning for the IU Bloomington campus helping instructors in community engaged course design and professional development.