College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

The Impact of Service-Learning on College Students' Civic Development and Sense of Self-Efficacy

Rachel Gershenson-Gates


The purpose of the present study was to address the need in service-learning for longitudinal assessment of multiple groups using validated measures to assess potential benefits for student development. A sample of 398 college students drawn from three groups (intensive service-learning, short-term service-learning, and control) completed questionnaires at three time points over the course of an academic year. Findings did not demonstrate cross-sectional or longitudinal differences in civic attitudes/skills and self-efficacy scores among groups. Limitations, including sample characteristics and self-education, are discussed. It is suggested that future research utilize mixed-methods designs with randomized groups to increase understanding of outcomes for students who participate in service-learning.