Research service-learning (RSL) is an emerging practice that connects service-learning with the mission of research universities to create new knowledge. Students, faculty and community partners identify a question of shared interest. Students conduct research in the context of a service-learning experience, where the research components (problem analysis, synthesis, and conclusions) become an integral part of the service provided to the community.
In the Hart Leadership Program the RSL Pathway follows a three-stage model. The first stage of RSL is a gateway course that is part of the undergraduate studies curriculum in the Sanford School of Public Policy. Students who wish to complete the second stage--a community-based research project, and the third stage--a capstone research project, can do so by securing independent research grants. One of our goals is to establish community-based research courses and capstone courses in the public policy curriculum in the next few years. Read more about the history of RSL in the Hart Leadership Program.
- Stage 1: The gateway course includes a service-learning component and introduces students to basic research skills and ethical issues. The course requires that students engage in structured critical reflection and complete a final course assignment, such as a policy memo or a research proposal, that integrates what they have learned in their service experiences and their academic study. Since fall 2006, the Hart Leadership Program has been developing RSL gateway experiences in core and elective public policy courses. Click here for a complete list of PPS courses that have offered the RSL gateway option.
- Stage 2: The community-based research (CBR) project can be an internship or academic course that includes field research that students conduct in collaboration with a community partner. If you are interested in pursuing a CBR project, there are a number of sources at Duke that support undergraduate research. We can help you locate them.
- Stage 3: The capstone course allows students to pursue an independent research project that builds on the CBR collaboration with the community partner.
Telling The Story
Members of Seidman's Fall 2009 Women as Leaders class, a course that is regularly offered in the Hart Leadership Program, were challenged to create a structural change to shape women's position on campus. The students came up with the Women's Housing Option, a large cluster of rooms in Few Quadrangle…Read More