Service learning projects

Students Service Learning Projects in Information and Communication Sciences

Service learning (SL) is a teaching strategy that integrates meaningful community service with academic learning. Through service learning students learn not only how to connect course theory and practice, but also how to help others, give of themselves, and enter into caring relationships with others in their community. The goal of service learning is to assist students to see the relevance of their new knowledge in the real world.

Service learning was introduced in the final year of graduate study in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, the largest faculty of the University of Zagreb (Croatia), in 2006-07.

Up to that point, students of information sciences learned the theoretical concepts and applied them to imaginary or simulated circumstances, but rarely managed to apply the acquired knowledge to the real world. The service learning projects provided them with structured time to rethink and implement ideas that they had during their 5-year study, but never had an opportunity to transform them into “hands-on” experiences and observe the results.

In the first two years, about 50 SL projects in the IT field were completed and evaluated. After the successful project outcomes in the test phase, service learning was introduced into the final year of undergraduate study as well, as a part of a new curriculum in the Academic Year 2007-2008.

As of 2008-09, a stand-alone elective course “Service learning in Information Sciences” (led by Nives Mikelic Preradovic, full professor) has been offered to all students in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Zagreb.

In 2009 SL was added as a regulation of the Croatian National Youth program 2009-2013 approved by the Government.

Below is the list and description of the service learning projects that were directly related to a community need.

Academic year 2017-2018

Academic year 2016-2017

Academic year 2014-2015

Academic year 2013-2014

Academic year 2012-2013

Academic year 2011-2012

Academic year 2009-2010

Academic years 2006-2007 & 2007-2008