Evaluation of service-learning in Aboriginal communities

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Client: Sydney University

In 2016-17, 90 students from Sydney University took part in four service-learning placements in three Aboriginal community-controlled organisations – Murdi Paaki Regional Assembly in western NSW, and the Tiwi Islands Regional Council and the Gundjheimi Aboriginal Corporation in the Northern Territory. Students came from a range of disciplines.

Students undertook projects the communities wanted – for example, in western NSW, the community wanted to reduce energy costs, and students worked with them to identify possible solutions, then build the solution desired – a bank of solar panels.

Mark and Megan are working with Sydney University to evaluate the service-learning project. We want to find out:

  • What was the impact of the service-learning project on the students and the communities involved?
  • With regard to cultural competence, what went well and what didn’t?
  • How could the project be improved?

We are using the framework of Ngaa-bi-nya, which Megan developed. Ngaa-bi-nya is an evaluation framework that respects the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, communities and organisations.

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Mark Ragg
Location: Sydney, Gadigal land
Description: Write, edit, research | Yulang Indigenous Evaluation with @MegBastard | Adjunct Fellow Indigenous health @UTS | Ragg & Co | Equity, justice
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