American University
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The relationship of community service learning to developing mature interpersonal relationships in a sample of university students

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posted on 2023-08-04, 15:13 authored by Joseph Christopher McGill

This study ascertained university student involvement in community service, as determined through the Community Service Involvement Inventory Format-II as a correlate to the developmental task, developing mature interpersonal relationships (MIR), as defined on and assessed by the Student Developmental Task and Lifestyle Inventory (SDTLI) (Winston, Miller, & Prince, 1987). Two hypotheses were developed to guide the study. One postulated that a significant relationship would be found between MIR and student involvement in community service, while another contended that such a relationship exists between MIR and students' perception of the extent to which community service contributed to their developing mature interpersonal relationships. Each hypothesis, tested in null form, was rejected (p $\leq$.05). Data used in hypotheses testing were elicited from 104 students with senior standing at the University of Redlands, California, in the fall of 1991 and spring of 1992. The Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient and analysis of variance (ANOVA) statistics were used, respectively, in testing the two hypotheses. Study findings led the writer to conclude that (a) community service learning positively affected the development of mature interpersonal relationships in the study sample of undergraduate university students, and (b) the total hours of involvement in community service learning, and the perception of the extent to which community service contributed to their developing mature interpersonal relationships, as defined by the MIR task on the SDTLI. Implications are that university faculty, administrators, and others working in the area of community service learning need to acknowledge the importance of community service learning to student development. They must design instructional programs and services with community service learning in mind to help students to capitalize on the psychosocial growth potential study findings suggest for community service as part of the undergraduate collegiate experience.



American University




Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 54-02, Section: A, page: 4270.; Advisors: Bernard Hodinko.; Ed.D. American University 1992.; English


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