Teaching a Community-Engaged Course can be exciting and deeply rewarding. Research indicates these courses are a high-impact learning practice, often leading to deeper student understanding of course material, higher overall GPAs, and better retention rates.
Spring Semester '24 CEC Applications Now Open
Instructors and faculty planning to incorporate community engagement into their Spring 2024 courses are encouraged to apply for the Community-Engaged Course (CEC) designation in MyUI. This designation allows students to proactively identify and register for courses that include community partnerships.
Instructors will be notified within two weeks of submitting their application whether their course received the CEC designation. If the course does not meet the CEC criteria, instructors will receive feedback and support in making any modifications that would contribute to a stronger CEC application. Applicants will have time to re-submit their CEC application before the final list is due to the Office of the Registrar shortly before early registration for the Spring 2024 semester begins. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis through the registration deadline.
The Office of Community Engagement is available to assist instructors in developing their CEC courses. Please reach out to Nick Benson at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive help in designing your course to meet the CEC designation standards.
All applications are due by Friday, October 27 at 5 PM.
Courses previously designated as a CEC should be submitted using the abbreviated Re-Designation application
88% of students who took a Community-Engaged Course at the University of Iowa agree their project helped them better understand course content.
Teaching a Community-Engaged Course (CEC)
The Office of Community Engagement and numerous campus partners are here to provide you with resources, best practices, and technical assistance to ensure your community-engaged teaching experience runs as smoothly as possible. We can help increase the benefits of community-engaged courses while helping navigate structural challenges, logistical issues, and potential partnership pitfalls.
The following guide provides faculty at Iowa with a beginner's overview of how to develop a Community-Engaged Course. Suppose you are new to this teaching area or want to review how you currently teach engaged courses. In that case, this guide can help you consider various items, including project development, syllabus development, partnership creation, project management, and evaluation.
Faculty are also encouraged to review the Goals and Principles of community-engaged teaching and learning before developing a new course or modifying existing ones to be community-engaged.
The University of Iowa Center for Teaching
The Center for Teaching is an excellent resource for faculty looking to tweak or revamp their standard course into a Community-Engaged Course. The following link provides a variety of resources for faculty to consider when transitioning or creating a new Community-Engaged Course:
Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities (IISC)
The Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities (IISC) is an engaged-learning program at the University of Iowa. IISC partners faculty, staff, and students with urban and rural communities to complete projects that enhance the sustainability of Iowa's communities while transforming teaching and learning at the university. Faculty interested in connecting their courses to sustainability-related projects in Iowa can work with the IISC to create or adapt their syllabus, identify a community partner, and develop and implement a course project.
Campus Compact, a national organization, leading the field in community-engaged learning, provides a wealth of information for faculty looking to create or modify their community-engaged courses.