Creating a Service Learning Portfolio

What is a Learning Portfolio?

A purposeful collection of student learning that exhibits the student’s efforts and achievements in a specific course or project.

How can Learning Portfolios be used?

Portfolios are gaining popularity in College and University education as a means for students to demonstrate the knowledge and abilities they have acquired from a specific activity (e.g. participation in service).  Proof of this can be found at 

What goes into a Service Learning Portfolio?

Documents pertaining to the processes involved in the project, as well as evidence of the project’s outcomes. For example:  
–      Service training 

 –     Journals or logs

–       Relevant academic work

–       Media coverage (including articles in the campus newspaper or website

–       Evaluations by community members and instructors

 –       Organizational brochures or other information

 –       Plan for action research or other future projects, etc.

–       Reflections that document the learning process. This could include an understanding of service learning and the student’s philosophy regarding the experience.

Benefits of a Service Learning Portfolio

  • Allows the learner to demonstrate learning to the outside world; the Portfolio can become a life-long learning tool for the student’s own purpose or to showcase learning to future employers.
  • The learner becomes more aware of learning in the real world as they reflect and document the learning experiences that take place in the organization or business involved.
  • Learning in a social context is recognized; sharing with groups or doing collaborative projects is valued and documented.
  • Students have an opportunity to reflect on who they are as a person, learning lessons from their own experiences and seeing changes and growth within themselves. 

For more information on service learning check out:  The Complete Guide to Service Learning
Catherine Berger Kaye (2004)  Free Spirit Publishing


About kbarnstable

Educational Leader
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