What Teacher Candidates Learned About Diversity, Social Justice, and Themselves From Service-Learning Experiences


Source: Journal of Teacher Education, Vol. 58, No. 4, 315-327 (2007)

This article examines how service-learning provides undergraduate teacher candidates opportunities to cultivate deeper understandings of diversity, social justice, and themselves. Participants were from a mid-Atlantic university and a rural southeastern university.

Although from different regions, the teacher candidates shared predominantly White, middle-class backgrounds. Three themes framed the discussion—preconceived notions about teaching in diverse settings, how preconceived notions were overcome (or reinforced), and "learning about myself as a teacher."


Findings suggest that service-learning, emphasizing multiculturalism and social justice, has the potential for empowering prospective teachers to confront injustices and to begin deconstructing lifelong attitudes and constructing socially just practices.

Updated: Jan. 07, 2008