E-service-learning is equally effective as traditional service-learning in enhancing student developmental outcomes

May Mei Ling WONG*, Ka Hing LAU

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


The adoption of online learning has been accelerated by COVID-19, including experiential learning such as service-learning (SL). This study compares the student developmental outcomes between the traditional face-to-face and e-service-learning (E-SL) to reveal the effectiveness of E-SL and its good practices. A self-reporting measurement instrument was used to collect and compare the developmental outcomes perceived by students before and after SL experience between the traditional SL and E-SL cohorts of a course with the same setting, including instructor, curriculum, and assessment criteria. Qualitative research methodology is adopted to analyse students’ learning artefacts to reveal possible reasons for the differences identified in student developmental outcomes, and good practices derived in E-SL. Results indicate that both traditional SL and E-SL cohorts show significant enhancement in student developmental outcomes after participating in SL. Although there are no significant differences between the two cohorts, E-SL seems to slightly outperform traditional SL in enhancing student developmental outcomes. Qualitative analysis indicates that good practices, such as stakeholders’ commitment and students’ constant reflection, could be the reasons why the challenges posed by the online environment in E-SL is turned into learning opportunities to students.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInteractive Learning Environments
Early online date20 Apr 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 20 Apr 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


  • E-service-learning
  • student development outcomes
  • good practices
  • reflection
  • stakeholders' committment
  • student developmental outcomes
  • stakeholders’ commitment


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