Foreign Language Departments and Civic Engagement: Does Mission Matter?

Professor Josef Hellebrandt
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In response to national and disciplinary initiatives around civic engagement in U.S. higher education, an increasing number of colleges and universities seek to promote academic and civic engagement. This research project investigates the extent to which mission statements of foreign language departments at faith-based and public institutions in the United States play a role in defining and promoting academic community partnerships.

This study addresses two important research questions: (1) How do departments representing both institutional types define civic engagement, and (2) What pedagogies and initiatives are being used in support of civic engagement? Responses to both questions will be sought through a survey to a representative sample of foreign language department at faith-based and public colleges and universities in the United States.

The results and implications of the survey will be discussed with conference attendees taking into consideration their own departmental missions and efforts in promoting civic engagement through academic community partnerships.

Keywords: Foreign Language Departments, Civic Engagement, Community Partnerships
Stream: Community, Culture, Globalisation
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: A paper has not yet been submitted.

Professor Josef Hellebrandt

Associate Professor of Spanish, Chair of Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, Santa Clara University

Josef Hellebrandt is an Associate Professor of Spanish and Chair of the Modern Languages Department at Santa Clara University, California. He is the editor of "Juntos: Community Partnerships in Spanish and Portuguese" (co-editors: Lucia Varona, Jonathan Arries) which was published in 2003 as volume 5 of the American Association of Spanish and Portuguese's Professional Development Series. Together with Lucia Varona, he edited one volume of the AAHE monograph series on Service-Learning in the disciplines, "Construyendo Puentes" (Building Bridges: Concepts and Models for Service-Learning in Spanish, 1999). He has written on the role of video and web technologies in college-community collaborations at both local and international levels and has given numerous presentations and workshops on the teaching and learning of foreign languages and cultures.

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