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Re: [xmca] The national context for education funding in the US

What bothers me about the term, service learning, Peter, is that it implies
no serious
intellectual engagement related to the critical, scholarly activities at the

While we still run a 5thD course of the kind described, it is by no means
restricted to education
or psych majors. Majors from all over the map participate.
And we also are engaged in an entirely different sort  collaboration with a
learning center at a HUD housing
project. The range of joint activities is vast, as are the serious life
problems facing all residents, so it provides
a marvelous canvas upon which students can explore the relationship between
their own life paths and the
conditions of life of people in very different circumstances.

I gather, Peter, that your experience is like mine: There is a serious,
positive, improvement of a generalized sort
in the further education of the undergrads. There are also some nice
outcomes, sometimes, for people in the
community, but it is a little difficult to erase poverty, sexism, and
rascism by this means. But since the question
Jay posed was about improving higher ed, and since these kinds of efforts
are in perfect allignment with the
policies of the present administration in Washington (for the moment) this
line of action seems timely.

Thanks for the links.

On Sun, Mar 29, 2009 at 10:44 AM, Peter Smagorinsky <smago@uga.edu> wrote:

> Hmmmm, this sounds remarkably like the way the 5th Dimension experience at
> UCSD works.
> I know that others attempt similar ways to integrate student work into
> communities, a.k.a. "service-learning" in US contexts. I'm teaching such a
> course this semester (see http://www.coe.uga.edu/~smago/SL/SLSyllabus.htm<http://www.coe.uga.edu/%7Esmago/SL/SLSyllabus.htm>
> for the syllabus), which I developed through a grant from UGA's Office of
> Service-Learning. One of my friends from the Fellows has a great project
> described at http://www.uga.edu/columns/070910/news-urbanfood.html. These
> efforts can also serve as great research sites and thus combine teaching,
> research, and service into one project. They also provide students with
> important experiences and close the town/gown gap by serving community
> members in need. p
> Peter Smagorinsky
> Professor of English Education and Program Chair
> The University of Georgia
> 125 Aderhold Hall
> Athens, GA 30602
> smago@uga.edu/phone:706-542-4507
> http://www.coe.uga.edu/lle/faculty/smagorinsky/index.html
> -----Original Message-----
> From: xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu [mailto:xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu] On
> Behalf Of Mike Cole
> Sent: Sunday, March 29, 2009 12:02 PM
> To: Jay Lemke
> Cc: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: Re: [xmca] The national context for education funding in the US
> My answer to your last question, Jay.
> Make participation in real world settings, linked to relevant academic work
> including reading and writing, mandatory for all students attending any
> college or
> university. Use money to do this mainly to support grad student supervisors
> who themselves are gathered into groups supervised by senior professors as
> one
> of their courses.
> All evidence is that such practices improve student commitment to more
> serious study at the university, increase the intellectual and social
> capital of those with whom
> they work, and increase understanding of social justice issues among more
> privileged students, e.g., those who can afford to attend a university.
> mike
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