Librarians participating in service learning at federal universities in the United Arab Emirates

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Source of Publication

Western Balkan Information Literacy Conference (WBILC 2018)

Publication Date



Service Learning (SL) is important for learners as well as the community. It is always a win-win situation as students get the experience of working in a real- life environment and develop critical thinking skills, while the community gains from the learners' contribution. In the past 35 years SL was introduced in the field of education and has been viewed as an important part of student education. Although primarily practiced in elementary and high schools, most universities and colleges around the world have now introduced SL as part of the curriculum while in others it is a prerequisite for graduation. Faculty have always been directly and actively involved in teaching and supervising students engaged in various projects for SL. Libraries and librarians are part of the academic community. They can participate as members of the community needing the service, giving the service with the students as well as instructors, partnering with faculty to teach students in the preliminary stages when they need information about the community or the organization or the problem and solution to propose to the community. Librarians as knowledge and information professionals play a key role in teaching and guiding students in finding resources suitable for the projects, organizations or communities they are helping. This presentation focuses on how librarians can contribute to the success of the SL projects and students learning through integrating Information Literacy in the SL curriculum. It is based on the literature review of SL in universities, and SL activities, projects and practice in selected universities in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Literature about SL in the Arab world and especially the UAE is limited therefore this presentation is significant in informing the world what students in UAE and universities are doing. In addition, it is a contribution to the knowledge base on SL and Information Literacy as well as on collaborations among units in the universities.




Limerick Institute of Technology (Ireland)

First Page


Last Page



Library and Information Science


Service learning, Information Literacy, Higher Education, University, United Arab Emirates

Indexed in Scopus


Open Access


Open Access Type

Bronze: This publication is openly available on the publisher’s website but without an open license