Intersections of Social Justice Experiences and Learning: Online Credit-bearing Skills-based Course for Community-Based Social Action

Andria Wisler (Center for Social Justice) · Round 4

Community-based learning and social action unfolds for students when macro themes intersect with micro actions through the cultivation of skills that integrate the two in meaningful ways. This ITEL project is a project of the Center for Social Justice Research, Teaching and Service, led by Principal Investigator Andria Wisler in collaboration with Amanda Munroe (Social Justice Curriculum and Pedagogy Coordinator, Center for Social Justice) and Michael Loadenthal (Practitioner-in-Residence, Center for Social Justice). It includes the development and piloting of an online, credit-bearing, skills-based course for community-based social action. Combining experience and reflection, students in this course will process the intersection and integration of themes including: research, teaching, and service; reflection and action; that which is personal and that which is political; the local and the global; one's position and one's identity.

In this project, students participate in a unifying course with eight weeks of reflective engagement with everyone in the course. There are three additional units of study: Conflict Analysis & Mapping, Communication and Community Partnerships, and Peace Education. Students have the opportunity to take one to three of these units, earning one to three credits through this course.

Intersections builds on this form of integrated learning through this UNXP online course to enhance the learning experience of students engaged in social justice work through community-based immersion. This "experience wrapping" connects students in diverse geographic locations in an online, mentored community so that they can deepen the reflective dimensions of their community-based work, while simultaneously building skills-based knowledge to link theory and practice in real-time.