Abstract

University engineering programs across the USA engage in service learning projects. These projects involve student teams designing and implementing products or solutions for communities in need, often in developing nations. There has been much research done relating to pedagogy and the impact of these programs on student learning. However, less research has been done on measuring the impact of these programs on the affected communities. This paper examines factors that practitioners believe are related to successfully delivering a desirable and transferable solution to affected communities. The authors identified 46 distinct factors from the literature that implicitly or explicitly are suggested to contribute to successful project outcomes. Formed as postulates in this paper, these 46 factors have been separated into 5 categories to assist understanding and implementing these factors into service learning programs. Lastly, different methods of analyzing and measuring project success and impact are discussed. Future methods for proving the viability of the 46 postulates are discussed as well.

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