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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.

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north east further and higher education alliance conference may 2011

North East Further and HigherEducation Alliance ConferenceMay 2011

Lorraine McIlrath

Coordinator Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI)

NUI Galway

PI Campus Engage

Where to from here? Challenges and opportunities for Further and Higher EducationIntroduction 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
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



Adult & Continuing Education; Distance & Online Learning; Access & Recruitment of diverse Learners; CommunityFellowships.

Research on civic issues

VolunteeringKnowledgeSharing;EconomicRegeneration;Access toInfrastructure;Probono Advice;Board Representation(Internal & External)

Collaborative research activities

Service Learning/ Community Based Learning

Teaching & Learning



Ranges of civic engagement practice

national review of higher education 2030 the hunt report
National Review of Higher Education 2030The 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

results of the international civic and citizenship education study iccs
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


Add Photos x 2

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

CKI aims to:

Place communities at the centre of debate

Educate students for civic engagement

Service Learning


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 studyand, 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 communitiesand 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
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

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
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
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
B.Sc. Nursing Studies

‘Nursing in the Developed and Developing Worlds’

Optional module

Second Year


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

‘Assignments that inspire and distinguish Engineers’

Mandatory Module

Third Year


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 work1
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
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


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


Macro – the institutionLook 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 keyTiming and support (SMT) and institutional visionMicro – the individualWhy?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;

Some ideas…from the macro to the micro (institutional to the individual)