Application Deadline: August 16, 2015

Why Serve on this Project?

While there is no financial compensation for the roles on this service project, you will be participating in the development and implementation of an innovative service-learning approach that will facilitate the design and development of needed adult basic education resources to support a grossly underserved population of learners. In the US alone, 30 million adults do not have high school credentials, but less than 2 million are currently supported within adult education programs. While we have a US-centric focus on this project, support for adult education is a need around the globe. Through your participation in this project, you will expand your service contributions in your field to an underserved population, while furthering your own professional development.

Upon successful completion of responsibilities on this project, each volunteer will receive a letter of recognition from Designers for Learning acknowledging the participant’s contribution. We are often asked how this service experience should be described in a CV or resume, and we recommend describing your role on the project within the “service” section. Include that you were a volunteer on a service-learning project facilitated by Designers for Learning, and note the duration of the project and the number of hours you volunteered your service. Provide details of your specific contribution, and the outcome of your efforts. In addition, given that content produced within this project is released under a Creative Commons license, feel free to include copies of the work you produced on this project within your professional portfolio.

Call for Volunteers

The project is managed by Designers for Learning, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in the US. We coordinate volunteer service-learning opportunities with those who seek to gain experience creating instruction and other types of performance improvement solutions for nonprofits and other social causes. Thank you for your interest in serving as a volunteer! Please read the project description and this Call for Volunteers before applying.

At this time, we are accepting applications for only the three roles described below. Please note that we are seeking professional educators and / or experienced instructional designers with an extensive academic and work background in either adult basic education or instructional design (or both) who will help us in the design and facilitation of our next service-learning experience. Applications are due by August 16, 2015, and the volunteer selection will be made by August 24, 2015.

Subject Matter Experts (SMEs)

We are seeking professional educators with extensive experience in adult basic education who will help us in the design and facilitation of the service-learning experience. If you have a strong background in adult basic education, please consider submitting an application to serve as a volunteer on our subject matter expert (SME) panel. Our objective is to secure a panel of 5 to 7 experienced adult educators who will volunteer to carry out the following tasks:

  • Goal and needs assessment:
    • Requested commitment: 1 to 2 hours per week from August 24, 2015 to October 15, 2015
    • Responsibilities: Volunteering in conjunction with the project manager, instructional designers, and the panel of fellow SMEs, you will help to define the deliverables that our service-learners will design and develop during the service-learning experience. Utilizing your background and expertise in adult basic education, you will help us to clarify the needed open educational resources that will best serve our target population of adult learners and instructors. As part of this initial assessment process, you will help our instructional designers and service-learners better understand our learner population and the adult basic education context in which the OER will be used.
  • Open online course advisement (Phase 1):
    • Requested commitment: 2 hours per week from February 1, 2016 to March 7, 2016.
    • Responsibilities: Our service-learning experience will begin in early 2016 within an open online course on the Canvas.net platform. Your assistance as a volunteer on the panel of SMEs is needed to provide feedback and support to students regarding their projects during this open course. Volunteering along side the course facilitators, you will offer discussion feedback and responses to questions within the course discussion forum.
  • Selected Cohort advisement (Phase 2):
    • Requested commitment: 2 hours per week from March 21, 2016 to May 9, 2016.
    • Responsibilities: After the open online course, your continued assistance is needed to provide feedback and support to students regarding their projects during the 7-week selected cohort. Volunteering along side the course facilitators, you will offer discussion feedback and responses to questions within the course discussion forum, as well as within 2 to 3 live webinars that could be planned during the Phase 2 of the service-learning experience.

Experienced Instructional Designers

We are seeking experienced instructional designers with an extensive academic and work background in instructional design to serve as volunteers on our design team for the spring 2016 service-learning experience. Our objective is to secure a team of 3 to 4 experienced instructional designers, including advanced graduate students and faculty in instructional design programs, who will collaborate to design and develop both phases of the service-learning experience.

  • Requested commitment: 2 to 3 hours per week from August 24, 2015 – November 15, 2015.
  • Responsibilities: Working in conjunction with the project manager, other volunteer instructional designers, and a panel of 5 to 7 SMEs on the project, you will help to:
    • define the deliverables that our service-learners will complete during the service-learning experience, and
    • design and develop designated aspects of the two-phase service-learning experience.

Service-Learning Facilitators

We are seeking experienced instructional designers to serve as volunteers on the facilitation team during the Spring 2016 service-learning experience. Our objective is to secure 4 to 5 experienced instructional designers, including graduate students and faculty in instructional design programs, to carry out all of the following tasks:

  • Open online course facilitation (Phase 1):
  • Requested commitment: 4 hours per week from February 1, 2016 –  March 7, 2016.
  • Responsibilities: The service-learning experience will be implemented in early 2016 in two phases starting with a 5-week open online course on the Canvas.net platform. Your assistance as one of 4 to 5 volunteer course facilitators is needed to provide feedback and support to students regarding their projects during this open online course. Volunteering along side a panel of other course facilitators, you will offer feedback and responses to questions within the course discussion forum.
  • Selected cohort facilitation (Phase 2):
  • Requested commitment: 4 hours per week from March 21, 2016 –  May 9, 2016.
  • Responsibilities: After the open online course, your continued assistance is needed to provide feedback and support to the service-learners selected to participate in the 7-week selected cohort phase of the service-learning experience. Volunteering with other course facilitators, you will offer guidance, feedback, and responses to questions within the course discussion forum, as well as within 2 to 3 live webinars that could be planned during the design cohort.

Anticipated Timeframes*

  • August 16, 2015: Call for Volunteers Deadline
  • August 24, 2015 : Volunteer Selection Announced
  • October 15, 2015: SMEs Deliverable Aims Confirmed
  • October 15, 2015: Designers Submit Proposal to Canvas.net
  • November 15, 2015: Design Finalized
  • February 1 – March 7, 2016: Phase 1 Implementation
  • March 21 – May 9, 2016: Phase 2 Implementation

* This is the planned schedule, but like most plans the milestones shown here are subject to change.

Questions or Comments?

Thank you for your interest in volunteering your time, skills, and knowledge to this important need! Please forward this Call for Volunteers to other students or faculty, and contact Designers for Learning with any questions or comments.