Jewish Studies and Service Learning in Higher Education:What Each Can Learn From the Other

Document Type

Article - Open Access

Publication Title

Journal of Jewish Communal Service

Publication Date

Winter 2012

Abstract/ Summary

Although service-learning has become an incredibly popular and powerful movement in higher education, the Jewish Studies field has to date had minimal interaction with, much less integration of, the practices and philosophies of service-learning and its pedagogical parallels such as civic engagement and community-based research. This article explores the opportunities and challenges that emerge at the intersection of Jewish communal interests in service-learning and higher education’s views toward the field. We map out the rise and spread of service-learning in higher education and offer a typology of practice to better understand the differing models of service-learning currently enacted. We conclude by suggesting that the field of Jewish Studies may serve as fertile ground for reconciling the potentially divergent goals of the university and Jewish service-learning as well as expanding Jewish service learning to reach a far larger audience and to provide a theoretical and pedagogic foundation to communal activities.

Publisher Statement

This article appears in the Journal of Jewish Communal Service, Vol. 87, 1/2. It is disseminated withe the permission of the publisher, the Jewish Communal Service Association. Subscriptions are available at .