Singapore University of Social Sciences

Learning with Communities

Learning with Communities (NIE301)

Applications Open: 01 October 2023

Applications Close: 15 November 2023

Next Available Intake: January 2024

Course Types: Modular Undergraduate Course

Language: English

Duration: 6 months

Fees: $1378 View More Details on Fees

Area of Interest: Others

Schemes: Alumni Continuing Education (ACE)

Funding: To be confirmed

School/Department: College of Interdisciplinary & Experiential Learning


Communities are complex, since their constituents (well, the humans) have such diverse needs and interests, which are increasingly polarised in current times. This makes community issues even more complex. Service-learning provides much needed experiential learning lens to unpack this complexity in navigating responsible action for collective good. Tapping on multiple perspectives to gain new insights; the experiential learning approach applies these insights to make tangible community-prioritised impact so that theory illuminates and informs experience, and experience lends meaning and energy to translate theory into practice and vice versa. This course enables learners to contribute to collective impact through a service-learning collaboration with one or more community partners. Through a real-world context, learners will be facilitated through progressive phases of co-constructing and experiencing a community change process - from engaging and learning with relevant partners, understanding the opportunities and context on the ground to proposing and implementing a technique to engage with the community. At the end of the course, students will be able to co-create, implement and co-evaluate reciprocal community change initiatives in collaboration with diverse stakeholders, equipped with the experience, skills and values to continue to learn through practice and critical reflection on what it means to do good well as a way of life.

Level: 3
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: Every semester


  • Principles and key elements of service-learning
  • Community partnership models
  • Perspective taking, effective communication and group facilitation
  • Community partner specific topic for partnership engagement
  • Systems thinking
  • Models for social sustainability
  • Risk assessment and management
  • Service-learning collaboration-specific topic
  • Theory of change
  • Impact mapping and measurement methods for identifying community-prioritised impact opportunities
  • Reflective practice for self and community: the critical reflection model in service-learning
  • Service-learning collaboration-specific topic for understanding community-prioritised impact

Learning Outcome

  • Prioritise partnership models for service-learning impact
  • Differentiate approaches to understanding service-learning impact
  • Demonstrate service-learning practice principles for sustainable impact
  • Implement a personal/group community change technique in reciprocal learning with community partner(s)
  • Verify the personal/group social impact through co-created measures
  • Formulate personal philosophy on social responsibility
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