Academic Service-Learning

enhancing learning through community service.

Academic service learning at creighton

The Office of Academic Service-Learning connects academic courses with community partners to enhance academic learning, meet community-identified needs, and foster global perspectives through engagement and reflection. 

What is academic service-learning?

Academic service-learning is an experiential educational strategy that integrates community service into academic courses so learning is enhanced and community partners receive concrete benefits. Students study, serve and reflect on their experience in order to deepen their appropriation of knowledge.

Examples of academic service-learning

  • An advanced Spoken French course that partners with French-speaking immigrants to help them learn English
  • A Theatre for Social Change class that developed training curriculum for Project Harmony, a local nonprofit focused on ending child abuse and neglect
  • An interdisciplinary ASL practicum course that combined technology, business and economics, and Spanish to deploy small digital libraries with preloaded educational material in areas where this type of information might not be accessible otherwise, like the Dominican Republic
  • An accounting class that offered free tax preparation services to help low-income individuals and families
  • A Public Relations Writing class that created news releases, infographics, direct mail postcards and brochures to attract new members to Live Well Omaha and promote campaigns, such as Bike Omaha Network and Accountable Health Communities
  • Senior dental students who spend two weeks providing dental care at a local public health dental clinic

Course offerings

  • 37 courses (4 cross-listing courses + 33 courses) 
  • 45 (combination of subject and course numbers) 
  • 157% increase in AcSL courses (AY17–18 to AY18–19)

Percentage of students reporting growth in key areas

  • 90% Integrating classroom learning with experiential knowledge, gained through direct contact with the everyday problems of real people
  • 94% Understanding own cultural biases and broadening global perspectives
  • 96% Developing critical thinking skills and problem analysis
  • 95% Fostering a commitment to public action and global citizenship

Service-learning benefits students in other ways 

  • 86% of students said the service experience made them more interested in the course content 
  • 86% of students said the service experience helped them understand course readings and lectures

Community Partnerships

Service learning in the community

What community partners are saying about their partnerships with Creighton University:

“My favorite part of partnering with CU is getting to work with [my faculty partner]. She is fascinating and passionate about her work. She is encouraging and challenging when it comes to working with her students. I have enjoyed the time she spent at [our site].”

“Almost all students have had a great attitude commitment to our staff and families. Even if they didn’t understand the course connection right away, they stayed committed and over time saw the importance of their service and the relationship to their class.”

“For some students, it was a challenge to make sure they understood the importance of a weekly commitment or communicating with our staff of any absences. However, overall, everyone exceeded expectations.”

Learn more about academic service-learning and find opportunities to serve and learn in the community!