All of our CBL courses integrate a CBL Placement with classroom learning. When enrolling in a CBL Course, the student is aware of the commitment to a community placement before the course begins. If a student is reading this for the first time and is not able to commit to this placement, the student should discuss this immediately with the professor and withdraw from the course if needed. Throughout the semester, professors will assign course readings and assignments that are relevant to the CBL Placement to enhance the overall student learning. Below is a summary of what is required by the CBL student during the semester.
- Community Based Placement: A Student enrolled in a CBL course is required to participate in a Community Based Placement during the semester. The type of placement will depend on the course a student is enrolled in. The student will work with the CBL office to select the placement that best fits the needs of the course as well as what works within the student’s schedule. A student must remember that the placement is a course requirement and is an academic commitment that takes priority over clubs and non academic events. If the student is an athlete, the student must inform the CBL office at the beginning of the semester of their athletic practice/game commitments, as this may limit the choice of placement.
- Mandatory Orientation: A student enrolled in a CBL course is required to participate in a CBL Orientation at SLU within the first two weeks of classes as well as an Agency Orientation at the CBL Placement during the next two weeks of classes. The weeks in between the Orientation at SLU and the Agency Orientation are used for students to either select their placement or complete necessary paperwork required by the placement agency. Students are required to check their email daily for emails from the CBL office in regards to their placement and answer immediately as to not delay the placement process.
- Required CBL Placement Hours: A student enrolled in a CBL course will be required to complete a set number of CBL Placement Hours during the semester. The number of hours depends on the level of course as well as what is set by the professor. Hours are spread across the semester and should not be completed in large chunks unless the course syllabus specifies differently. A student must complete between 20 hours and 40 hours per semester for each standard CBL course, however some courses may require more. The professor will inform the CBL student of the hours required either on the syllabus or during the first week of classes. Please be advised that if a student is enrolled in more than one CBL course during a semester, the student will be required to complete the hour requirements for each course. This could be time consuming for students, so a student must schedule their time to allow for both placements/hours or withdraw from one of the courses.
- Learning from Reflection: There are three main components to any CBL program or course: reflection, reciprocity and exposure to and appreciation of difference. Reflection requires that students understand the broader historical, social, political, economic, environmental and/or physical/natural contexts of their experience in the community. A student enrolled in a CBL course will be required to reflect on their experiences through reflection activities. Across our CBL courses, reflection has taken on many forms including research projects, short papers, oral presentations, journals, collaborative projects and/or creative projects. The professor will inform the CBL student of the reflection assignments on the syllabus during the first week of classes. Reciprocity means that all parties (students, professors and Community Partners) involved in the CBL experience are teaching and learning. Our CBL courses and programs emphasize partnerships where defining and assessing community needs and developing approaches to address those needs is done collaboratively between the students, professors and the Community Partners. Lastly, our CBL program emphasizes opportunities to explore and better understand difference. In addition to emphasizing race, ethnicity, gender and sexuality, which are typically the foci of many diversity initiatives, our CBL courses also open the doors of understanding to social class, geography, disability, and age. What is especially rewarding is that CBL allows for the understanding of diversity in all its forms from a more personal and critical perspective. Community Partners are encouraged to ask the students placed at their agency about their assignments and offer assistance or additional information as needed. The more the student understands the agency, the more the student learns both in class and out.
- Forms: A student enrolled in a CBL course is required to complete the following forms. These forms assist the office in the placement process as well as document statistics for use by the professor and to help secure funding for the program. The forms needed are Student Preference Sheet/Email, a Student Placement Contract, and a Student Time Log.
Welcome Email: A student enrolled in a CBL course will receive a Welcome Email prior to the first day of classes. The student will be required to reply and answer the necessary questions that will be used to assist the CBL office in collecting data needed to communicate throughout the semester.
Student Preference Sheet/Email: A student will be given information in regards to CBL placements that are available to them either during the Mandatory Orientation held during the first few weeks of classes or the student might also be contacted via email before the semester begins with placement options. The CBL student will need to complete this form before the end of the orientation session or reply to the email within 2 business days with their placement preference. The CBL office tries very hard to place the student in their first choice; however student class schedule, athletics and even transportation may play a role in being assigned a second or third choice. Students should consider all commitments before ranking their preferences.
CBL Contract: The CBL Contract represents the understanding between all parties involved with a CBL Placement to include the CBL student, SLU professor, CBL Staff, and the Community Partner. The CBL student will utilize their course syllabus to complete the front of the form then bring this contract with them to the agency orientation or on their first placement visit. The Community Partner will review and update as needed the information pertaining to the placement responsibilities and sign the back of the form. The student must then bring it to his/her professor so the professor can review and update as needed the course specific information and then sign the back of the form. The CBL student must then return the contract to the CBL office in 4 Whitman Annex by 4pm on Friday of the last week of September (Fall) or February (Spring). If the contract is not received by this deadline, the associated placement may be suspended or terminated. If a placement is suspended or terminated, it may reflect in the student grade of the course and/or prevent the student from completing the required hours.
Student Time Log: The Student Time Log is used to track completed CBL Placement hours. The student uses it to make sure they are completing their hours on time; the Professor uses it to confirm at the end of the semester that the student completed the required hours as it pertains to their participation/professionalism grade; and the CBL Program uses it to track hours for statistical purposes related to funding and to confirm hours for mileage reimbursement. Many agencies will have a binder located on site for students to keep their Time Log during the semester. If not, it will be the student’s responsibility to bring the Time Log with them to each visit. Either way, the student is responsible for filling the Time Log out and getting the necessary approval after each visit. The Community Partner will assist in monitoring the hours as well, by signing the Time Log after each visit.