Service learning in high school context: an interpretive synthesis
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Service learning is used increasingly in primary, secondary and higher education contexts. It provides platform for multiple learning pathways from experiential and social-emotional learning to character and values education, and from citizenship education to critical literacy. The main purpose of this study was to explore the concept, and practice, of service learning through an approach to interpretive synthesis. To this end, this study analyzed a number of selected research studies conducted in high school context, noting salient research paradigms utilized. The study also analyzed the second-order interpretations, derived from the studies using some perspectives on service learning as rethought and conceptualized by Butin (2010), with a view to identifying major variables and constructs focused on, and highlighting what other, if any, conceptual categories any potential studies might consider. One of outcomes of this study provides a service-learning framework which could be used in educational contexts. Another outcome of the study puts emphasis on the service learning areas the previously conducted studies primary focused on, and the salient research paradigms and methods used, and the ones not used. The final outcome of the study highlights the service learning areas that could be explored further, and the areas that have not been focused on at all.