Community Service, Social Responsibility and Educational Performance in Rural China's Middle Schools: Evidence from a Case Study of Northwest China
Journal of Moral Education, Vol. 40, No. 2, page(s) 181–202
Posted: 9 Apr 2013
Date Written: June 1, 2011
The overall goal of this paper is to try to understand in the context China’s middle school education system what is the tradeoff between community service and educational performance. In addition, we seek to understand some of the other effects of participation in community service activities. When students participate in community service, does their self-esteem rise and/or self-efficacy rise? Finally, we also want to know if students participate in community service activities will their sense of social responsibility rise.
Because the nature of this question is so broad we must necessarily reduce the scope of the paper. To do so, we study a community service program funded and run by a private US foundation in 592 junior high and high school classes in two counties in Shaanxi province. While we understand that there are many institutional and pedagogical issues that will affect the relationship among community service, grades and a sense of social responsibility (e.g., citation), we will focus our efforts on empirically evaluating the linkages. We also recognize that by focusing on the activities of an NGO in a single part of China that many of the findings will be affected by the context of the program. However, we also believe that we may be able to observe and measure more fundamental behavioral relationships. At the very least we seek to provide rigorous, statistically-based evidence from a case study which hopefully can be combined with other work to help us more fully understand community service, social responsibility and educational performance.
Keywords: Education, China
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