Choosing your service learning experience

Finding an experience that is right for you

Service learning benefits everyone involved. You will acquire a range of valuable skills and the community will benefit from your time and involvement.

Image: Nelson, Zachary. Unsplash, 2017.

Service learning is most effective as a regular and ongoing experience, so consider activities where you can make a regular contribution. Your own school community could provide you with a starting point for a wide range of service learning opportunities.

However, a word of caution: there are some activities that don’t qualify.

Any work that is paid cannot be included. So, if your athletics coaching or lifeguarding is paid, it cannot form part of service learning. Also, take care with fundraising. For fundraising to have meaning it must be clear that there is a direct and genuine benefit for others, not just to raise money for a visit where you are the main beneficiary!

You need to find activities which will meet the five learning outcomes established by the IB:

  • Identify your own strengths and areas for growth.

  • Demonstrate participation with service learning.

  • Demonstrate the skills and recognize the benefits of working collaboratively.

  • Demonstrate engagement with issues of global significance.

  • Recognize and consider the ethics of decisions and actions.

Completion of the CP service learning requirement is dependent on meeting these five outcomes.

The evidence for meeting these requirements will be your portfolio and the three formal interviews with your service learning coordinator or advisor.