21st century skills are vital for students' preparation to successfully live and work as adults in the 21st century. Given the prominence and importance of the 21st century skills, there is a need for more extensive research regarding community activities, service learning, and the development of 21st century skills. The purpose of this study was to examine the level of self-reported improvement in 21st century skill development of youth puppy raisers after participating in a year-long service-oriented experience in the following areas: (a) interdisciplinary skills, (b) learning and innovation skills, (c) information, media, and technology skills, and (d) life and career skills. A quantitative survey instrument was designed based on the Partnership for 21st Century Skills Framework and named The Peace Inventory of 21st Century Skills. The instrument contains four skill domains consisting of 23 total survey items. A four point Likert scale was used to collect self-reported improvement ratings for each of the 23 items. The results from 113 individuals who began puppy raising for Guide Dogs for the Blind after January 1, 2005 while under the age of 18 were collected and analyzed. The means and standard deviations for each of the four skill domains were calculated, and a repeated measures analysis of variance was used to determine if a significant difference existed between the four skill domains. The findings revealed that participants attributed improvement in each of the four 21st century skill domains from the experience as a puppy raiser for Guide Dogs for the Blind. This service-learning experience had the strongest reported impact on both life and career skills and learning and innovation skills. The findings from this research further support and strengthen the literature regarding the benefits of service-learning experiences on youth development, especially in regards to 21st century skills.
|Commitee:||Greenberg, Jonathan, Sonnenburg, Donna|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||DAI-A 77/02(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Educational leadership, Education philosophy|
|Keywords:||21st century learning, 21st century skills, Community service, Guide dogs for the blind, Service-learning, Youth development|
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