North East Further and Higher

Education Alliance Conference

May 2011

Lorraine McIlrath

Coordinator Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI)

NUI Galway

PI Campus Engage

Where to from here? Challenges and opportunities for

Further and Higher Education

Introduction to presentation

Aim: To do some work!

• Provide a context for civic engagement – volunteering & service learning;

• Look at some policy and recent findings from a national survey – Campus Engage;

• View the Community Knowledge Initiative at NUI Galway;

• Some ideas for consolidation or future planning (institution to the individual).

Group Work

In groups please share one manifestation or example of civic engagement that you are aware of at your institution.

School Institute Name to go here

Teaching & Learning


Adult & Continuing

Education; Distance &

Online Learning; Access

& Recruitment of diverse Learners;


Fellowships .

Research on civic issues

Service Learning/

Community Based







Access to


Probono Advice;

Board Representation

(Internal & External)

Collaborative research activities Research


Ranges of civic engagement practice

Area Policy Year Language/Reference

Ireland Universities Act 1997 Promote learning in its student body and in society/ promote the cultural and social life of

society, while fostering and respecting the diversity of the university's traditions/ foster a capacity for independent critical thinking amongst its students/ support and contribute to the realisation of national economic and social development/ disseminate the outcomes of its research in the general community

Europe Bologna


1999 A Europe of Knowledge is now widely recognised as an irreplaceable factor for social and human

growth and as an indispensable component to consolidate and enrich the European citizenship, capable of giving its citizens the necessary competences to face the challenges of the new millennium, together with an awareness of shared values and belonging to a common social and

cultural space.

The importance of education and educational co-operation in the development and strengthening

of stable, peaceful and democratic societies is universally acknowledged as paramount, the more so in view of the situation in South East Europe. This is of the highest importance, given that

Universities' independence and autonomy ensure that higher education and research systems continuously adapt to changing needs, society's demands and advances in scientific knowledge.

Europe Bologna Magna



1988 Preamble - that the universities' task of spreading knowledge among the younger generations implies that, in today's world, they must also serve society as a whole; and that the cultural,

social and economic future of society requires, in particular, a considerable investment in continuing education;

The university…..To meet the needs of the world around it, its research and teaching must be morally and intellectually independent of all political authority and intellectually independent of all political authority and economic power.

and affirms the vital need for different cultures to know and influence each other innovation and students entitled, able and willing to enrich their minds with that knowledge.

Ireland Taskforce on



(Report of)

2007 (iv) Education for Citizenship

A crucial factor in the contribution of education to Active Citizenship is the way in which values are

‘caught’ and not just ‘taught’ in the course of learning. Schools and colleges are places where people learn about behaviour, dialogue, decision-making as well as a range of skills, knowledge and attributes that enable people to act as thinking, critical, responsible and caring citizens in a democratic society.

But, if learning does not cease after completion (p 21).

The Taskforce recommends: that the Higher Education Authority (HEA) should lead an initiative, with appropriate resources, to promote, support and link together citizenship initiatives across the Higher

Education sector, including ‘service learning’ and volunteering by students (p 22).

The Taskforce recommends: the development of a certificate/award (complementing Gaisce awards) which would be earned through completing at least three months volunteering or community involvement activity (in Ireland or overseas). This could be done, for example, through a 3-month/year

‘civic engagement’ gap during further education or the early stages of working life.

Ireland Skillbeck

Report (M

Skillbeck The



2001 At the turn of the millennium, there is a continuing groundswell of demand. Individuals are seeking advancement while whole societies are looking to higher education and research to underpin economic growth, improve the quality of life and strengthen the social fabric. Universities have a vital role in helping to set new goals and directions for human development while maintaining a rich and ancient cultural heritage.

Creation and support of both on-campus and virtual environments that foster in students cultural and social values as well as intellectual proficiency and professional competence.

Strengthen links and partnerships with industry, the community and the institutes of technology to achieve a more open style of operation and closer integration with the community;

Ireland National


& Training Act


2003 Competence-Insight Dimension:

…the ability to engage in increasingly complex understanding and consciousness, both internally and

externally, through the process of reflection on experience. Insight involves the integration of the other strands of knowledge, skill and competence with the learner’s attitudes, motivation, values, beliefs, cognitive style and personality. This integration is made clear in the learner’s mode of interaction with social and cultural structures of his/her community and society, while also being an individual cognitive phenomenon

National Review of Higher Education 2030

The Hunt Report

• endorses the renewal of the civic mission of higher education and that ‘engaging with the

wider society’ is ‘one of the three interconnected core roles of higher education;

• defines ‘engagement with business and industry, with the civic life of the community, with public policy and practice, with artistic, cultural and sporting life and with other educational providers in the community and regions and it includes an increasing emphasis on international engagement.’ (p 74);

• HEIs ‘should deepen the quality and intensity of their relationships with the communities and regions they serve, and ensure that the emergence of new ideas can better inform community and regional development.’ (p 77)

• implementation of engagement with the wider society include strong leadership at institutional level, resource allocation, inclusion in promotion criteria and inclusion in the

metrics evaluating impact at the institutional, regional and national levels. (p78)

Available at http://www.hea.ie/files/files/DES_Higher_Ed_Main_Report.pdf

Results of the International Civic and

Citizenship Education Study (ICCS)

• Young people in Ireland are more politically and civically aware than students in

38 other countries, according to detailed findings of this major international survey of civic and citizenship education (ICCS);

• on a test of civic knowledge, Irish students performed well above the international average, ranking seventh;

• a majority of students in Ireland (87%) reported that they expect to vote in future national elections, which is higher than the international average (81%);

• Students in Ireland also tended to have less positive attitudes towards freedom of migration in Europe.

Educational Research Centre (ERC), St Patrick ’ s College on behalf of Department of Education and Skills

– accessed 4/01/2011 at http://www.erc.ie

Add Photos x 2 http://www.wevolunteer.ie

School Institute Name to go here

National Survey of Civic Engagement within Irish Higher

Education – some findings from Campus Engage (June, 2011)

A mutually beneficial knowledge-based collaboration between the higher education institution, its staff and students, with the wider community, through community-campus partnerships and including the activities of Service Learning/Community based Learning, Community engaged research,

Volunteering, Community/Economic regeneration, Capacity-building and Access/Widening participation.

• Over 75% of respondents indicated that there is a moderate to substantial acknowledgement of civic engagement;

• over 60% indicate that promotion policies do not take civic engagement into account; all indicate that there is senior management support but all report that there are major barriers toward the implementation of civic engagement within HEIs, with resources

(human and fiscal) and time cited most commonly as factors;

• ‘labour of love’ and the saturation factor;

• Complex data gathering process and need for ‘joining of the dots’.

Available soon at http://www.campusengage.ie

CKI aims to:

 Place communities at the centre of debate

 Educate students for civic engagement

– Service Learning

– Research

– Student Volunteering

– Knowledge Sharing

Member of Campus Compact 2004 &

Talloires Network 2008

NUI Galway

Community Knowledge Initiative

Campus Cartography

the engagement of students with their programmes of study and, through civic engagement, with the wider community; the enthusiastic engagement of staff with their teaching and research and the support of their students; and the engagement of the whole University

community with the wider society through partnership with appropriate organisations.

Student engagement is promoted through new methods of teaching and learning, through the accessibility of teaching staff

• and the open and supportive learning environment they create, through formal civic

engagement programmes, and support for extra-curricular student activities.

• We recognise the importance of engaging with partners regionally, nationally and

internationally. Partnership is central to the achievement of our ambitious research and teaching goals. Long-standing relationships with organisations active in the social, economic, cultural and industrial life of our hinterland have been, and remain, critical to our success, and to the social and economic development of Galway and the wider region.

• We will continue to use our resources of knowledge as a basis for engagement with

communities and as a means of promoting social inclusion and economic development at

regional and national levels.

NUI Galway Strategic Plan 2009-2014

Engagement is a distinguishing feature of our University:

Student Volunteer Programme

• Established in 2003;

• Growth – 15 to 800 annually

• Moving form strutured and formal to lose and informal;

• Use of new technologies for matching and rewarding;

• Graduation Ceremony (March)

• 4,500 to date

• www.nuigalway.ie/alive

School Institute Name to go here

‘seeks to engage students in activities that enhance academic learning, civic responsibility and the skill of citizenship, while also enhancing community capacity through service’

(Furco and Holland, 2004:27)

‘a form of experiential education that combines structured opportunities for learning academic skills, reflection on the normative dimensions of civic life, and experiential activity that addresses community needs or assists individuals, families and communities in need’

( Hunter & Brisbin, 2000:623)

Service Learning….some definitions

‘definitional anarchy’ (Sandmann, 2008)

Service Learning Characteristics

• Learning linked to academic discipline;

• Integration of theory and practice;

• Theory viewed in a real world context;

• Enhancement of Community University Partnerships;

• Credit awarded for the learning (not time within the community);

• Reflection strategies underpin the process;

• Community becomes a teaching tools and partner;

• Experiential learning underpins the process;

– the chameleon

Partnership with COPE Galway

• Memorandum of Understanding 2009

• Homeless Services (Civil Law, Occupational Therapy, Civil Engineering, Health

Promotion and Philosophy);

• Community Catering (PhD Collaboration);

• Domestic Refuge – (Civil Engineering & Service Managers Lecturing);

• General (MIS Student on Social networking, SU fundraising 2010-2011)

• Institutional Projects

• Collaborative Conference – Social Gerontology;

• CORA Project Partner and Community Champion;

• Tawasol Project – COPE Galway as partner;

• Collaborative Writing on the process of partnership.

B.Sc. Nursing Studies

‘Nursing in the Developed and Developing Worlds’

• Optional module

• Second Year

• 6 ECTS

• 30 Students

• Placement in a developing county

• Aided in community placement choice

• 30 contact hours and 3 to 6 weeks in community

• Self-financed (fundraising)

• Field study, reflection report (3000 words) and journal

• Presentation to peers and staff

Sites: Ranchoid Hospice (Kabwe, Zambia), Ortum Mission Hospice (Kenya),

Our Lady’s Hospice (Lusaka, Zambia)

B.Sc. Biomedical and B.Sc. Mechanical Engineering

‘Assignments that inspire and distinguish Engineers’

• Mandatory Module

• Third Year

• 3 ECTS

• 65 Students

• Share skills and knowledge with the community

• Engagement with a group different to your own

• 16 hours

• Self selected projects – individual and group

• Reflections service log, poster and public display

Group Work

• As special advisor to the government, you have been asked to make key recommendations on the future of engagement within higher education, what do you propose.

• Your Minister for Education like clusters of threes….what are your top three points/recommendations…..

School Institute Name to go here

Motivations (orientations) of local academic staff

• Pedagogical - enhances learning experience, develops civic responsibility

• Personal Values Orientated - giving something back to the community, vehicle for social justice, consistent with personal political standpoints

• Institutional/Contextual- building university/community partnerships, a means of career advancement

McIlrath L (2005) Survey of NUI Galway academic staff involved in service learning

Four orientations to civic engagement

• Personal

• Student learning

• Civic (Local / Broad)

• Higher education (varied from motivator to no impact)

Boland (2008) Embedding a civic dimension within the higher education curriculum: a study of policy, process and practice in Ireland

Some ideas…from the macro to the micro

(institutional to the individual)

Macro – the institution

Look at existing practice and join up the dots;

Enable support (internal and external) and look for champions;

Enact policy & institutional vision/mission;

Consider the future and make plans;

Investigate funding sources;

Positioning of the project/portal is key

Timing and support (SMT) and institutional vision

Micro – the individual


Consider the curriculum and points of community connection;

Consult – students, community, colleagues, management etc.

Work collaboratively within sector and look to exemplars (Campus Engage/Campus Compact);

Be mindful of potential pitfalls (garda vetting/child protection/ insurance/ disclaimers etc)

Develop a scholarly dimension;