Community Engaged Learning criteria for graduate courses

Beyond the classroom!


Community Engaged Learning involves fostering mutually beneficial partnerships that enhance student learning, address societal concerns, and improve quality of life by co-creating partnerships that meet community needs.

What are the criteria for a graduate Community Engaged Learning designation?

Graduate courses designated as Community Engaged require a minimum of 15 hours of work with a community partner. These courses also require student reflection on the community engaged learning component. It is highly encouraged instructors assess the student reflection piece. Information on Community Engaged Learning student assessment tools can be found at this link. Community Engaged Learning designated course sections will be reviewed every five years.

The Community Engaged Learning designation will be piloted during the 2021-2022 academic year. To launch the designation, the Community Engagement Council invites instructors teaching lectures, labs, discussions and seminars to apply for this optional program. Faculty interested in having a graduate course(s) designated as Community Engaged Learning should ensure that the course(s) meets the following elements:

  • Must involve 15 hours of engagement with/for a community partner or individual, as well as at least one reflection piece on the engagement that is tied to graded course material. The reflection piece can be an assignment, a paper, a quiz, a test, etc.

Accredited programs recognized as community-engaged

UWL houses several accredited programs designated by the Community Engagement Council as Community Engaged Programs. Each program systematically includes community-based experiences for all students in the program through required elements in the curriculum (traditionally through required fieldwork, internships, or practicums). Students develop skills and integrate theoretical and practical knowledge while also providing a service to partner organizations.



Occupational Therapy


Physical Therapy


Physician’s Assistant


Athletic Training


Public Health


Radiological Technology


Nuclear Medicine


Therapeutic Recreation


Recreation Management


School of Education programs leading to licensure as K-12 teachers

undergraduate and graduate

School Psychology


When do I apply for a Community Engaged Learning designation?

The Office of Community Engagement invites instructors to apply for a Community Engaged Learning course section designation by: February 15 (fall courses), September 15 (spring courses), and December 15 (summer courses). This designation is an optional opportunity. 

To begin the Community Engaged Learning program process, the Community Engaged Learning Proposal should be completed in Qualtrics, along with either a detailed outline or course syllabus (preferred) attached as one document. 

A list of potential partnerships for faculty who need connections is available on the UWL Community Idea Exchange. Faculty are also welcome to find their own community partner.

Contact us!

Lisa Klein, Community Engagement Coordinator


Visit us!

UWL Office of Community Engagement
Cleary Alumni & Friends Center, Room 104
1725 State Street
La Crosse, WI 54601