Community-Based Learning

Start Here

There are two key components of Community-Based Learning at UWW and they are defined as follows: 

Service Learning is a course or competency-based, credit-bearing educational experience in which students: 

  • Participate in mutually identified service activites that benefit the community.
  • Reflect on the service activity in such a way as to gain further understanding of course content, a broader appreciation of the discipline, and an enhanced sense of personal values and civic responsibility. (Bringle and Clayton, 2012, adapted from Bringle and Hatcher, 1995)

Community-Based Research: "Community-Based Research is collaborative inquiry that is dedicated primarily to serving the research or information needs of community organizations. The Community-Based Research community-campus partnership includes representatives of the community organization, students, and faculty. These partners work together to address a community organization's need to study itself (e.g., to evaluate a program) or to gather information necessary for organizational or program development (e.g., a community needs/assets assessment)." (Paul, E. L. (2006). Community-based research as scientific and civic pedagogy. Peer Review, 8(1): Retrieved from

To get started with CBL, here are some key resources:

  1. UW-Whitewater Course Redesign Planning Guide
  2. Checklist for New CBL Courses
  3. UW-Whitewater CBL Student Learning Outcomes and Rubric
  4. Michigan State University Service-Learning Toolkit: 
  5. Tips from a UWW Faculty Member

Please see our Resources page for an extensive list of additional resources!