Developing Citizenship Through Community Service: Examining the Relationship Between Community Service Involvement and Self-Perceived Citizenship Among Undergraduates
Smist, Jennifer Anne
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This thesis investigated the relationship between community service involvement in curricular and cocurricular community service and students' self-perceived citizenship. Community service involvement was addressed through four methods: community service as part of a class, with a student organization, as part of a work-study experience, and on one's own. This study used data collected from 1,205 undergraduate students at the University of Maryland in spring 2006 as part of the Multi-Institutional Study of Leadership. The instrument employed in this study was based on a revised version of the Socially Responsible Leadership Scale (SRLS-Rev 2) and was designed to assess student leadership development within the framework of the social change model of leadership development (Higher Education Research Institute, 1996). Self-perceived citizenship scores differed significantly based on whether students participated in community service during college. Community service through student organizations and work-study experiences were found to be significant predictors of self-perceived citizenship.