Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2006



Publication Title

Journal for Civic Committment


This study explored the psychosocial development outcomes of service learning from three distinct models: ongoing continuous service throughout a semester in co-curricular service learning; one time, intensive week-long spring break service learning trips; and ongoing service through a semester of academically-based service learning. A control group of students who had no involvement in service learning was used for comparative purposes. The Student Developmental Task and Lifestyle Assessment (SDTLA; Winston, Miller, & Cooper, 1999b) was administered to college students involved in each of the three types of service learning and the control group. This instrument was administered as a pre-test at the beginning of the academic semester, and then again at the end of the academic semester as a post-test to determine the developmental differences. The findings indicated that there were significant developmental differences among the three service learning pedagogies. In particular, the results suggested that, based on the SDTLA Developmental Tasks, the Spring Break service learning pedagogy had statistically significant psychosocial development gains. The implications for service learning practitioners include further understanding of the developmental outcomes of these service learning types are explored.