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Agents of Change: Journalism Education as Critical Service-Learning

Jeanne E. du Toit (School of Journalism and Media Studies, South Africa)

Role of Education and Pedagogical Approach in Service Learning

ISBN: 978-1-80071-189-1, eISBN: 978-1-80071-188-4

Publication date: 7 November 2022


The chapter deals with a service-learning course based in the School of Journalism and Media Studies at Rhodes University in South Africa. It provides a backdrop for the case study, describing the context in which the course is based and kind of intervention that it aims to make into this context. It then maps out the theoretical framework that informs the course, explaining how this is informed by the available spectrum of approaches to service-learning. It demonstrates how the course draws on the concept of a ‘communicative ecology’, to provide itself with a language in which to reflect on the social significance of communication. The chapter then reviews the first cycle of the course which took place in 2019, drawing on insights from participants (teachers, students and community partners). It deals, firstly, with the participants’ engagement with the concept of service-learning. Secondly, it describes their experience of service-learning as a communicative process. Finally, it describes their evaluation of this process as an intervention into the local communicative ecology. It is demonstrated that service-learning enables the school to respond strategically to the need for innovative communicative practices both in their immediate environment and within the broader South African context.



du Toit, J.E. (2022), "Agents of Change: Journalism Education as Critical Service-Learning", Sengupta, E. and Blessinger, P. (Ed.) Role of Education and Pedagogical Approach in Service Learning (Innovations in Higher Education Teaching and Learning, Vol. 46), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 75-92.



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