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Thursday, June 23 • 13:45 - 14:45
CON07.02b - Learning with change, changing with learning: lessons from four years of the New Opportunities for Innovative Student Engagement (NOISE) for Social Change project

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Institutions of higher education (IHE) strive to balance and integrate commitments to teaching, research, and service (Boyer, 1990/1996; Rice, 2002; Eberly, 2006; Yapa, 2006). How these commitments work together in support of democracy is an ongoing concern (Doberneck, Glass, & Schweitzer, 2012; Flanagan,2006). For the last four years the New Opportunities for Innovative Student Engagement (NOISE) for Social Change project, at York University, has been striving to operationalize the integration of these ideals. Hosted by the School of Social Work, NOISE brings together undergraduate and graduate-level university students and youth from a marginalized urban community into small study groups in order to identify an issue of shared socio-political concern, undertake participatory community-based research on the issue, and design and implement an action to address the issue (Camino, & Zeldin, 2006; Harkavy & Hartley, 2009; Kirshner, Strobel, & Fernandez, 2003; Hurtado, 2007; Choules, 2007; Kirshner, Strobel & Fernandez, 2003). The aim of NOISE is to expand the educational, career, and civic possibilities for younger and older students alike by creating a context for reciprocal and shared learning with social justice at its core. The NOISE model simultaneously builds and engages community by employing community-based research, multi-directional mentoring, and critical social service learning: NOISE builds community by engaging with community. The three pillars of NOISE are community-engaged participatory action research, critical experiential social service learning, and multi-directional mentoring.

Participants in this session will view a youth-produced video about the NOISE program and learn about the NOISE model including its evidence base. Additionally, I present preliminary findings from our mixed-methods applied study of the processes and outcomes of NOISE as a PSE access and student engagement program that integrates community-based research, engaged pedagogies, and community connection.


Rebecca Houwer

Rebecca Houwer is the Knowledge Exchange Manager at Youth Research and Evaluation eXchange (youthrex.com). Rebecca is a Doctoral Candidate in the Faculty of Education at York University. Her dissertation research examines a critical community service learning initiative called New... Read More →

Thursday June 23, 2016 13:45 - 14:45 EDT