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WRITING NATURE: THINKING AND WRITING ABOUT NATURE AND IDENTITY Service Learning & Community Service Writing: Moving from Theory to Practice with "Real" World Writing by Carolyn Ross and Ardel Thomas


During the summer of 1999, Ardel Thomas and Carolyn Ross presented the following paper at the Higher Education and Research Development Society of Australia (HERDSA) Conference at the University of Melbourne in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.


Community Service Writing (CSW) at Stanford, part of a growing interdisciplinary service learning movement in American post-secondary schools, integrates academic and "real" world writing. As part of their first-year writing requirement, CSW students undertake internships with nonprofit organizations, researching and writing a variety of practical documents, from web sites to grant proposals. This writing is distributed to a broader, more diverse audience than college writers are accustomed to. In CSW, students contribute to the community; their writing stands to have real effects on people and policies. These projects prepare students in crucial ways for their lives beyond school, including writing in work environments.

Community Service Writing offers students opportunities to engage in problem-based learning applying and extending rhetorical strategies from the classroom to concrete writing tasks outside of it. In implementing a service learning pedagogy, instructors and students sometimes find it difficult to reconcile theoretical lessons with their practical tasks as teachers and writers. However, since Community Service Writing involves higher stakes (a successful grant proposal might allow an organization to "stay afloat") than essays simply written for a grade, instructors and students, in cooperation with community agency mentors, appreciate effective writing as the ultimate consequence of problem-based learning.

In our paper, we will describe the Community Service Writing Program at Stanford; articulate its pedagogical premises and principles in the context of recent research and scholarship; and share outcomes based on experience -- ours as composition instructors, our students' as "real" world writers, and the organizations' with whom we work.



Thought without practice is empty, practice without thought is blind.

- Kwame Nkrumah, Former President, Ghana


A Democratic Education

The goal of the Community Service Writing (CSW) Program at Stanford University (U.S.A.) is to integrate academic and "real" world writing. As part of their first-year writing requirement, CSW students undertake internships with non-profit organizations, researching and writing a variety of practical documents, ranging from newsletter articles, brochures, and web pages to documented reports and grant proposals. Community Service Writing is part of a growing interdisciplinary service learning movement in American secondary and post-secondary schools. The 1990 federal Commission on National and Community Service defines service learning as a method

a) under which students learn and develop through active participation in thoughtfully organized service experiences that meet actual community needs and that are coordinated in collaboration with the school and community;

b) that is integrated into the students' academic curriculum or provides structured time for the students to think, talk, or write about what the student did and saw during the actual service activity;

c) that provides students with opportunities to use newly acquired skills and knowledge in real-life situations in their own communities; and

d) that enhances what is taught in school by extending student learning beyond the classroom and into the community and helps to foster the development of a sense of caring for others. (National and Community Service Act of 1990 qtd. in Waterman 2)

Service learning provides students with opportunities to engage in problem-based learning, applying and extending classroom knowledge to concrete interactions outside of it. This process involves more than a utilization of learned academic skills; it also encourages students to see themselves as proactive members of society, participants who contribute in real ways to a complex social discourse.


One of the most potent ironies of a capitalist democracy, as in the United States, is that the ideals of individual success through competition and the notion that all people are created equal contradict powerfully. In a society of "haves" and "have-nots" in which the government has no inherent or consistent duty to care for all, it often falls to the "advantaged" individual to care for the "disadvantaged" one. Although "advantage" often connotes economic privilege, it manifests itself as well in physical, spiritual, communal, or educational advantage. Thus, paradoxically, a capitalist democracy engenders both social inequity and the passion, on the part of individual citizens and non-governmental organizations, to rectify it. In the U.S., individual volunteers have traditionally joined non-profit organizations dedicated to diverse social causes to work collectively with other socially responsible individuals with like interests and commitments.


Until the early twentieth century, when John Dewey's educational philosophies began to revolutionize education in America, the academic institution positioned itself as separate from any communal or social responsibility because it operated on an aristocratic, Platonic model. According to educational historians Ira Harkavy and Lee Benson,

Existing American schools, as Dewey viewed them, were largely derived from and dominated by... antiquated, highly dysfunctional, aristocratic, monastic models.... Dewey developed a theory of instrumental intelligence and democratic instrumental education that provides the underpinnings for the growing democratic "crusade" against Plato's aristocratic, idealist, contemplative philosophy. (15-16)

Although Dewey did not envision service-learning as a specific means to address this problem, the phenomenon of service-learning in the past few decades is consistent, according to Harkavy and Lee, with

Dewey's theory of democratic or "New Education" [in which he] emphasized that students should be able to help shape their own learning, help form their curriculum, and reflect on its value. Democracy and learning, for Dewey, would both be advanced if human beings were engaged in active real-world problem-solving.... (16)


In the past few decades, the swiftly accelerating interest on the part of American public and private secondary and post-secondary schools in incorporating service-learning into their curriculum has been both educationally and socially driven. This has given the American educational institution itself a crucial role in facilitating the traditional partnership between the individual and the non-profit social organization. "Volunteerism" has become more than social action; it has been institutionalized as a means of democratic education.


Community Service Writing at Stanford

As an "elite" private university, Stanford's geographic location in relation to the communities surrounding it is more than metaphorically significant. Unlike the University of California at Berkeley (a public institution) which was designed as an integrated element of the city of Berkeley, Stanford, established in 1891, was built in the foothills above Palo Alto, California, its grand palm-lined avenue leading at a slight incline from town to campus. Since its inception, Stanford has been at a remove from the rest of the community, even as the community has grown up around it. To this day, people refer to the university as "The Farm," and the campus's most famous architectural feature -- the lofty Hoover Tower -- is the very embodiment of the symbolic "Ivory Tower," the university alienated from community realities.


Service-learning at Stanford is a response to this alienation. Since the political and activist upheavals of the late 1960s, various programs based on student work-study, internship, and problem-based learning models began to grow up in departments and programs university-wide. The general goals of these programs have been to connect the University and community as well as to relate students' theoretical and practical knowledge. Established in 1988, and one of the first programs of its kind in the United States, the Community Service Writing Program was initiated as a joint project of the Program in Writing and Critical Thinking and the Haas Center for Public Service at Stanford. Until this year, Writing and Critical Thinking had existed within the Department of English; now it operates as an independent program within the School of Humanities and Sciences.


Students who choose to be involved in the CSW program are assigned, as part of their work in their required first-year writing course, to write for a non-profit community service agency. CSW students produce a wide variety of practical documents, such as news articles and press releases, editorials, grant proposals, brochures and fact sheets, web pages, position papers, technical reports, and letters to legislators. They may research an issue and write a report for the agency or take information provided by the agency and present it in writing for a specific audience.


In terms of composition pedagogy, the aim of the project is to give students a chance to write outside of the academic setting, where their work will reach an audience beyond the teacher and will serve a purpose for its readers as well as for the writer. More specifically, the Community Service Writing Program seeks

  • to bridge traditional voids between the university and the community, between personal and public identities, between disciplines of study, and between theory and practice;
  • to extend students' readership beyond a one-way student-instructor exchange to include peers and readers in the broader community;
  • to expand kinds of and motives for writing beyond literary analysis, theoretical argument, and writing for grades;
  • to incorporate a range of writing occasions which demand that students undertake new roles and implement various practical strategies as writers.

The writing students do in CSW is much like the writing they will encounter in the world of work, in that it requires the kind of audience awareness and flexibility adult writers need. Moreover, the communication cultures students participate in in their associations with community agencies resemble the work cultures that so many students will be part of after college. Through CSW, students find mentors, begin to build personal and career networks, practice working in successful collaborations, and are exposed to a "real-world" work ethic.


Agencies interested in taking on Stanford CSW students as researchers and writers for their organizations sometimes contact the coordinator of CSW directly, although most placements are cultivated by the coordinator or by the instructors who teach within the program, and sometimes by students themselves. The CSW coordinator is responsible for learning what kind of writing the agency wants and for getting in touch with a writing instructor whose curricular goals are a good match with the agency's needs. Some courses in Writing and Critical Thinking with CSW components are thematically based, and those instructors may ask to work with agencies with thematically relevant goals and missions. For example, one CSW class with an environmental theme works with conservation and urban planning non-profits. Other classes, which are not as strictly thematically based, may work with a wider range of non-profit social service, political action, or even some governmental organizations.


Typically, an instructor sets aside five or six weeks of the ten-week academic quarter for Community Service Writing. Among those agencies offered to their particular class, students choose those whose missions are of most interest to them. The student writers are responsible for setting up initial meetings with agency mentors to clarify their writing tasks; arranging deadlines; agreeing on schedules and means for periodic check-ins with agency personnel; and -- if students are working collaboratively, as is often the case -- dividing up the research and writing. Students read and edit each other's work, and instructors may offer editorial assistance as well. Student writers submit drafts of their work to their agencies several weeks before the final deadline so that they can get feedback from their mentors and make appropriate revisions.


Community organizations not only appreciate the fact that students have undertaken writing projects that agency staff has not had time to complete, but they have also been generally very pleased by the quality of the materials submitted. Staff members look forward to the shift from writing to coaching student writers. In addition, agencies enjoy the enthusiasm and the fresh perspective students bring to their work. CSW strengthens campus outreach; it introduces students to community agencies and public service, establishing and reinforcing a bond between the University and the community. This relationship benefits both the community and the students themselves in their roles as citizens and "real" world writers.


The Educational Value of Service-Learning

In a Platonic educational model, the site of learning (that is, the classroom or laboratory) is fixed, the student learns by rote, and the teacher has absolute authority. In an experiential, service-learning model, the classroom expands to include the community and its diverse institutions; students learn by doing, as well as through critical evaluation and reflection; and the teacher's authority becomes less rigid as community mentors share in teaching.


According to Jeffrey Howard, Assistant Director for Academic Service Learning at the University of Michigan, numerous studies have shown the extent to which students do not absorb or retain, much less critically process, information given them in traditional, lecture-style classes (28). The service-learning paradigm, in moving away from the Platonic education ideal, productively abandons what the radical education theorist Paulo Freire calls the "banking concept of education," within which "education... becomes an act of depositing...." In this system, writes Freire, "students are the depositories and the teacher is the depositor. Instead of communicating, the teacher issues communiqués and makes deposits which the students... receive, memorize, and repeat" (213). Freire argues that in this model, education "will never propose to students that they critically consider reality" (215). Service-learning, to the contrary, coaxes both students and teachers to reconsider in fundamental ways what it means to learn, and what it means to teach.


Confirming our own experience and that of so many other service-learning instructors we've spoken to, a study conducted at the University of Michigan identifies students in a political science course with a service-learning component as having received better grades and claiming that their learning was "more enhanced" as compared to that of other political science students who were involved solely in lectures and library research (Howard 28). Howard states that "students' observations and experiences in the community setting are as pivotal to... [their] academic learning as class lectures and library research" (21).


Experiential or problem-based learning clearly engages students at a more meaningful level, not to mention a more practical one, than passive learning. As David Cooper posits, experiential learning includes "the cultivation and expression of a student's individuality, the transformation of the classroom into a venue for free and independent activity, inquiry, and thought, and the importance of learning through experience" (52). When there is a real rather than a theoretical problem to be addressed and the consequences of their work are tangible, students not only work harder, but they also probably learn more effectively.


For example, when Community Service Writing students are challenged to research and write a grant proposal upon which a non-profit oganization's funding depends, the research and writing that these students do takes on a much more critical importance than a grade on an academic essay, no matter how grade-conscious these students may be. Consequently, students throw themselves into the task and take great pride in their work. The lessons these students learn about solid research, credible argumentation, effective writing style, and the importance of careful articulation and impeccable presentation are immediate, and they are more easily recalled in subsequent writing situations. Thus, although their contributions to the community are significant, students engaged in service-learning accomplish more than giving to others; they profit tangibly in bringing their knowledge and skills, reinforced by their work in the "real world," back to their academic work.


In order to reinforce the consequence and relevance of service-learning, an effective program will provide students with consistent opportunities to reflect upon and evaluate their service-learning experiences, in class discussions, in comparative and analytical readings, and in their writings for class. For theorists like Dewey, reflective thinking is essential to effective education because it encourages "active, persistent and careful consideration of any belief or supposed form of knowledge in the light of the grounds that support it and the further conclusions to which it tends" (9).


Even as teachers committed to service-learning recognize the enormous pedagogical value of this shift of emphasis in service-learning away from passive to experiential learning, they are also fundamentally challenged by it. In virtually all cases in which service-learning augments more traditional classroom methods, a significant consequence is a de-centralization of the teacher's authority and a re-envisioning of his or her role as a facilitator of learning -- sometimes a guide, sometimes a "mere" manager.


In some instances, university service-learning instructors have not only shared their authority, but have altogether relinquished their roles as teachers in a traditional sense, handing that job over to the community mentors with whom the students work. In their newly published book on service-learning, Timothy Stanton and Nadinne Cruz, directors of the Haas Center for Public Service at Stanford University, and Dwight Giles, director of internships at Peabody College of Vanderbilt University, recount the convictions of Herman Blake, a service-learning instructor at the University of California at Santa Cruz:

He did not see himself as the students' instructor. That role he assigned to the community people with whom he placed his students.... He wanted his students to be immersed in the life of communities in which they served... [and] their learning and their service was to be controlled and directed by those communities.... He wanted his students to serve these communities through the work they would do there, but also through learning the wisdom and knowledge of their hosts -- wisdom and knowledge that was not normally accessible on a university campus. In learning to appreciate this community-based knowledge, and thereby legitimize it in the eyes of their hosts, Blake hoped his field studies students would empower the host communities, so that their sons and daughters might eventually come to the academy as college students. (127)


The service-learning paradigm demands a conscious, dynamic, and flexible three-way interaction between the student (or, more broadly, students as a class of learners), the teacher (or academic institutions as providers of contexts for learning), and the community mentor/agency (or communities as sources of both practical knowledge and the occasions for students to apply their skills). This new paradigm differs radically and profoundly from the traditional lop-sided, authority-based two-way interaction between student and teacher. In this new triangulation, all three parties are challenged, and all three profit in a continuously productive feedback loop.


Commonalities and Differences of Genre and Rhetoric in Academic and "Real" World Writing

Genre, in the context of a comparison of academic and "real" world writing, refers to both the purpose of the writing and the form it takes. Anne Beaufort discusses the pervasive misconception that genre is related soley to "belle lettres, ...fiction, ... [and] various types of reading materials, but not... [to] everyday types of texts." However, she points out that "genre knowledge... [is] essential to... writers in... [any] discourse community. No writer can participate in a discourse community without adopting the genres of that community." As examples, Beaufort cites several of her research subjects and the genres they practice in their workplace writing:

We've heard Selma, Pam, and Brigitte talk about the genre of grant proposals in connection with their fundraising efforts with government and private sector discourse communities, and we've heard Ursula talk about the press release, letters of request and a number of other genres she must write to the larger business community.... (141)

Genre, in workplace and community service writing, is directly determined by a writing's practical purpose, and the success of the writing, whatever its genre, depends positively on the writer's clear and unambiguous understanding of both his or her own goals and the identity, assumptions, and needs of the reader. When workplace or community service writing fails, it does so flatly and categorically, because it is not credible, clear, or appealing to its reader.


Academic writing genres are much less pragmatically determined, and they are impelled by the unequal power relationship between the student and the teacher. There are, of course, audiences (i.e. teachers), purposes (i.e. grades), and conventions of form and style for academic writing (often varying between disciplines -- for example, in the difference between a literary analysis and a biology lab report). However, in academic writing, the subject of writing is generally much more open, its form and style are much less rigidly determined, and its success or failure is a matter of degree, abstractly --and to some extent subjectively -- represented by a grade. It is, of course, often the goal of teachers to encourage, through a certain degree of flexibility in subject, content, form, and style, original thinking and writing in their students. (In fact, some students, after encountering the constrictions inherent in Community Service Writing's very specific audiences and purposes, return to the relative freedom of academic discourse gratefully inspired!) However, since not all students can in all their academic writing tasks succeed in achieving or maintaining this originality, most students revert to well-worn academic formulas: in form, the five-paragraph essay and, in style, a distant, often pompous, academic voice. Thus, especially in that it requires students to re-consider the crucial importance of purposeful writing and clear and simple prose, Community Service Writing projects often provide students with an important reality check, which many report helps them improve their academic writing skills overall.


Although there are crucial differences, especially related to audience and purpose, between practical and academic writing genres, the fundamental rhetorical devices by which students develop and articulate information and ideas are perhaps surprisingly similar. What students learn about research, organization, analysis, and written articulation in a Community Service Writing context can inform their approaches to these tasks in an academic context, and vice versa. For example, in terms of research, a CSW student may discover through his or her CSW project the value of community networking, personal interviews, original surveys, and archival research in augmenting the more typical secondary research in the university library to which undergraduate students often limit themselves; conversely, an academic writer may recognize the need in his or her community service writing to ground potentially biased information or anecdotal evidence in broader and more credible secondary research.


The rhetorical modes which students use to develop and articulate information and ideas in community service and academic writing are interesting to juxtapose and compare. In an academic context, a student may be asked to write a descriptive or narrative essay. A personal narrative essay might be the result of such an assignment, whereas, in a community service writing context, the student might produce a descriptive fact sheet or a newsletter article reporting an event. A process analysis -- as in a chemistry lab report -- might take the form of a project proposal in community service writing. An academic essay developed through causal analysis might deal with a broad historical topic for a class project, but a CSW project developed through causal analysis might examine and evaluate the effects of a specific current public policy, with the proactive goal of arguing for concrete change. In a comparison and contrast essay for school, a student might compare two literary works; in a CSW project, a student might report on and analyze two opposing political positions in an article for a community organization's newsletter. Many community service writing projects have a persuasive goal, as do many academic essays. The difference is that in most CSW projects that involve argumentation, the consequence of the argument is concrete. For example, a CSW student may write a grant proposal or a position paper for a community organization as opposed to a theoretical argument in an academic essay. Audience considerations in persuasive writing in community contexts discourage students powerfully from engaging in defensive arguments or harangues.


The purpose, form, and conventions of academic writing may be very different from those of documents generated in the workplace or for a community service agency, but the basic strategies students employ in conveying information and developing ideas and arguments in written form are quite similar. Clear and effective writing shares many of the same characteristics in both discourse communities.


Teaching and Learning in "The Contact Zone"

In her extensive work on travel writing, post-colonial theorist Mary Louise Pratt coined the term "contact zone" to explain highly charged moments that occur in "social spaces where cultures meet, clash, and grapple with each other, often in contexts of highly asymmetrical relations of power, such as colonialism, slavery, or their aftermaths as they are lived out in many parts of the world today" (530). Pratt originally utilized this model to explore a Peruvian text written in 1613 ( a work written in an amalgamation of Quechua and "ungrammatical, expressive Spanish") by an indigenous Andean, Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala and sent (although never received -- and discovered in Copenhagen 350 years later) to King Philip III of Spain. She argues that the importance of Guaman Poma's 1,400-page letter to King Philip is that this First New Chronicle and Good Government was his attempt to write about his community as he knew it to the distant king. Pratt calls this genre of writing the "autoethnographic text...a text in which people undertake to describe themselves in ways that engage with representations others have made of them" (531). While Europeans wrote extensive ethnographic pieces about the conquered "Other," autoethnographies become "representations that the so-defined others construct in response to or in dialogue with those texts" (531).


What does this colonial model of the "contact zone" have to do with service-learning generally, and Community Service Writing specifically, in the American academy today? First and foremost, it is crucial for all of us to remember that we are each, historically, a product, on some level, of colonialism and empire. Here, at yet another fin-de-siècle, socially and culturally, the United States is still reeling from colonial hangover -- slavery, the genocide of indigenous people, and the 1835 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in which a large portion of Mexico suddenly became the U.S. (for a very cheap price) and within a day the Mexicanos became illegal aliens. In California in the last five years, two propositions that ensure that "illegal aliens" be stripped of their rights have been voted into law. Colonialism is alive and well in the United States, as it is elsewhere.


Service-learning is one of the tangible ways that the academy has been addressing the issues of social and cultural inequity -- the ramifications of colonial "progress." Pratt extends her original definition of the contact zone to include academic contact and the community: "The idea of the contact zone is intended in part to contrast with ideas of community that underlie much of the thinking about language, communication, and culture that gets done in the academy" (536). As we have mentioned earlier, service-learning does help foster academic growth, but Robert Rhoads points out that

another equally important goal of service learning [is] the role that students can play as change agents.... For students to see themselves as agents of social change, often it is necessary to have contact with diverse individuals and groups whose struggles might in some way connect to the lives of the students. (40)

At first, students who enter into a community service writing situation often see the community organization mentor and the people aided by the organization as "other" from themselves. The diverse individuals and groups that Rhoads mentions above do seem radically different. However, over the course of the quarter, students enter in to this contact zone and realize through their experience and writing that they do connect with this diverse group of individuals. The student, in turn, not only brings this new understanding of a particular community back to the classroom, but also back to the academy as a whole. In this way, the community helps to inform the university.


We would like to offer a tangible example of the ways that the contact zone works within the specific context of Community Service Writing at Stanford. As we explained earlier, Stanford University is geographically positioned outside of and separate from the very affluent town of Palo Alto. Adjacent to Palo Alto, however, is East Palo Alto, a socio-economically disadvantaged community with a predominantly African-American and Latino population. Negative media portrayals of East Palo Alto have encouraged racist and classist stereotypes of this small community. It is interesting to note that EPA has many of the most original and interesting grass-roots political organizations in the entire San Francisco Bay Area.


One of the political, Afro-centric organizations in East Palo Alto that works on issues of environmental racism and environmental justice has, over the past two years, been working to disseminate information about a concrete batch plant that the local government wants to relocate to East Palo Alto. The community service mentor at this organization, a radical African-American activist, asked for a student writer who would be sensitive to issues of race and environmental racism -- a student who would inherently understand the struggle that both the organization and the community were undergoing. The student who chose the assignment was an Anglo young woman from an affluent suburb in Florida. At first glance, the eighteen-year-old student and the fifty-something political activist had absolutely nothing in common.


As this student rode her bicycle over the bridge and into East Palo Alto, she was, quite literally, entering the contact zone. And when the community organizer opened up the door to her organization and found the student standing there, smiling hesitantly, she, too entered the contact zone. Through their work together in this middle ground -- in this liminal space -- these two figures who, historically speaking, should probably never have met, let alone worked together as mentor and mentee, came up with an absolutely brilliant newspaper editorial informing the community of the environmental health dangers inherent in the proposed cement batch plant. This student came back to the classroom and shared her knowledge learned from the community mentor. There was no book from the library or lecture the instructor could have given that would have imparted the sort of knowledge that she walked away with and brought back to the university. In turn, the community mentor also gained knowledge and new insights into the seemingly disparate world of the university. Because of her experience, this student is now using her knowledge as a Biology major to do summer work in East Palo Alto with another environmental justice organization. Both the academy and the community thus become contact zones that nurture one another.

Some Open Questions: Challenges Inherent in Extending the Boundaries of the Classroom

In a decade of practice, we teachers and administrators who participate in and so heartily endorse the Community Service Writing Program at Stanford University, and who support the broader premises and goals of service-learning, have fallen short of perfecting our approach. There are some challenging pedagogical issues as well as some downright disturbing social questions that linger at the edges of our commitment to an integration of academic learning and community action. There remain a baffling array of questions, some apparently minor, some of fundamental importance:

  • In sending "advantaged" students out to aid the "disadvantaged," are we merely perpetuating an attitude of noblesse oblige?
  • What becomes of the teacher's expertise, his or her special knowledge or "authority," when he or she becomes a project manger?
  • Do community agency mentors necessarily make good writing teachers?
  • Do students have the experience, knowledge, authority, and skills to be "real" writers in the "real" world?
  • Who should grade students' Community Service Writing work and according to what standards?


We have realized, though, that Community Service Writing's greatest advantage, over more traditional methods, as an effective educational tool may have everything to do with its rough edges and its inherent unpredictabilities. This is the nature of teaching and learning in the contact zone. Through Community Service Writing, students face unfamiliar challenges -- in the people, often so unlike themselves, that they meet and work with; in the kinds of knowledge they encounter; and in the communication tasks they undertake. Fostering in our students flexible skills in writing and critical thinking is what Community Service Writing is all about. These are skills that students take with them as they move through their academic experience and beyond, not only into their work worlds but also into their lives as citizen and members of society. Our hope for them is that they will see themselves as participants who contribute in real ways to a complex and ongoing social discourse.




Beaufort, Anne. "Writing the Organization's Way: The Life of Writers in the Workplace." Diss. Stanford U, 1995.

Cooper, David D. "Reading, Writing, and Reflection." New Directions for Teaching and Learning 73 (Spring 1998): 47-56.

Dewey, John. How We Think. New York: Heath, 1933.

Freire, Paulo. "The 'Banking Concept of Education." Ways of Reading. Eds. David Bartholomae and Anthony Petrosky. Boston: Bedford Books of St. Martin's Press, 1996. 211-223.

Harkavy, Ira and Lee Benson. "De-Platonizing and Democratizing Education as the Bases of Service Learning." New Directions for Teaching and Learning 73 (Spring 1998): 11-20.

Howard, Jeffrey P. F. "Academic Service Learning: A Counternormative Pedagogy." New Directions for Teaching and Learning 73 (Spring 1998): 21-29.

Pratt, Mary Louise. "Arts of the Contact Zone." Ways of Reading. Eds. David Bartholomae and Anthony Petrosky. Boston: Bedford Books of St. Martin's Press, 1996. 527-542.

Rhoads, Robert A. "Critical Multiculturalism and Service Learning." New Directions for Teaching and Learning 73 (Spring 1998): 39-46.

Stanton, Timothy K., Dwight E. Giles, Jr., and Nadinne I. Cruz. Service-Learning: A Movement's Pioneers Reflect on Its Origins, Practice and Future. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers, 1999.

Waterman, Alan S. "Preface: An Overview of Service-Learning." Service-Learning: Applications from the Research. Ed. Alan S. Waterman. New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1997. 1-2.

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