Integrating CSL into a Course
The key to a successful CSL experience is its consistent integration into the goals and activities of a course. In a typical CSL course, each student spends 20 hours during the semester with a community organization, often working with a team. (These hours replace time normally devoted to out-of-class activities such as library research or extra reading.)
Course assignments and activities are designed to help students navigate the relationship between those experiences and course material. For example, students might be required to keep reflective journals, write short papers responding to their experiences, and/or create a written or visual product that integrates knowledge from the course with knowledge from their community project.
The CSL program offers supports and resources to help you build CSL into your course. To get started, please contact Sue McKenzie
, Manager, Community Engaged Learning. You can also refer to the Introduction to CSL for Instructors, where you will find definitions of CSL, an overview of pedagogical approaches, resource references, and a detailed timeline. In addition, instructors find it useful to browse past course syllabi and to visit the library of resources at CSL Office, including our binder of examples of past community projects. We also keep an updated collection of resources and research here on our website.
Integrating CSL into a course takes some planning and preparation. Interested instructors are encouraged to contact the CSL Program at least six months prior to the start of the term in which they hope to adopt CSL in a course. Intentions to integrate CSL into a course in the following Fall/Winter academic year are due to the CSL Program by the first Monday in May/October
Submitting an Intention Form via the NEW CSL portal
kick-starts the process of matching your course with relevant community partners.
CSL has been integrated into academic courses in a variety of disciplines and programs: Anthropology, Dentistry, Drama, Education Policy Studies, English, French, German, History, Human Ecology, Humanities Computing, Linguistics, Middle Eastern and African Studies, Modern Languages and Cultural Studies, Native Studies, Nursing, Philosophy, Physical Education and Recreation, Political Science, Psychology, Rural Economy, Russian, Scandinavian, Sociology, Spanish, Strategic Management and Organization, Swahili, Ukrainian, Women’s Studies, and Writing.