Constructing and Evaluating an Intergenerational Academic Service-Learning Curriculum in Gerontology


Intergenerational Service-Learning has been documented to enhance student learning. Research indicates that students in healthcare professions view working with the geriatric population as a low priority due to negative stereotypes of the elderly. The purpose of this study was to develop a teaching model for establishing partnerships between academic programs and community services for students of gerontology and to evaluate the effect of an Intergeneration Service-Learning curriculum. This research adopted a qualitative approach to study the learning experiences of nursing students during an interdisciplinary community-based healthcare course. Data were collected by participant observation, students’ written journal reflections, verbal presentation of their reflections, instructors’ observations, and focus group discussion. It introduced the rationale, development process, content, and evaluation of the teaching model designed by the researcher. The effects of this curriculum not only were reported as a bridge across generations connecting youth and elders but also fostering positive attitude, improving the ability to care and enhancing commitment to elder people. This article provided an overview of Intergenerational Service-Learning teaching model that involved students in learning outside the traditional classroom and provided a needed service in the community. Otherwise, an important element of this teaching model was to infuse “reflection” in learning process of the nursing students by faulty, which would be appropriate for improving the quality of education and the findings of this study provided direction for the course design for gerontology.

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Liu, H. , Chang, C. and Chao, S. (2015) Constructing and Evaluating an Intergenerational Academic Service-Learning Curriculum in Gerontology. Creative Education, 6, 753-761. doi: 10.4236/ce.2015.68078.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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