Service-Learning Through Marketing Research Class Projects
AbstractAlthough academic organizations typically cite “teaching, research, and service” as their primary missions, the service component is often weighted less-heavily in the faculty promotion and tenure process compared with teaching and research. This is unfortunate for publically-funded colleges and universities, since in many disciplines community service can be more beneficial and visible to taxpayers, legislators, parents, and other constituency groups than academic scholarship will ever be. One goal for higher education that should be taken very seriously is the development of students who learn the value of being productive members of their communities by contributing pro bono expertise to those with a need, but without the expertise or resources necessary to accomplish the task(s) on their own. In an effort to enhance their images, many modern organizations reward employees for such community service. Since the public at large has increasingly come to perceive higher education - particularly faculty members - in a negative light, service-learning is arguably one of the best methods for addressing this problematic image. One very promising area for service-learning activity is through marketing research class projects. This manuscript first provides an overview of service-learning including a conceptual framework, and then supports that introduction with an example.
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