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College of Arts
and Sciences (College)
Academic Bulletin

College Programs
College of Arts and Sciences (College) 
Kirkwood Hall 104 
130 S. Woodlawn 
Bloomington, IN 47405  
Local (812) 855-1821 
Fax (812) 855-2060 
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Leadership, Ethics, and Social Action

Minor in Leadership, Ethics, and Social Action
Course Descriptions



Jean Robinson (Political Science)

Web Site


Academic Advising and Program Coordinator

Joelene Bergonzi, (812) 855-6308, Woodburn Hall 210, e-mail: lesa@indiana.edu


Community engagement contributes to all aspects of the university's mission. As a pedagogical method, service learning furthers students' critical thinking, improves their mastery of academic material, and examines the relationship between theory and practice. It also strengthens students' sense of social and ethical responsibility, deepens their understanding of the context of social issues, and encourages them to participate in communities beyond campus. Service learning also can make faculty and student research more rigorous, as well as more responsive to public concerns. Finally, service learning reinvigorates the university's commitment to using its resources for the public good. Reflection on the experience of community service is a crucial element of this pedagogy.

Important Advising Notes: Students should contact the advisor for the program early in their degree program to complete the minor application by spring of the sophomore year, and to receive information about course availability and sequencing, as well as program announcements and opportunities. Call (812) 855-6308 to make an appointment or e-mail lesa@indiana.edu to inquire.

It is advisable to complete the first three requirements in the first and second year of the undergraduate program.

To obtain departmental consent to participate in the Capstone Seminar in the fall semester, students are expected to complete the other requirements listed below (1-4) before undertaking a capstone project. To prepare to submit a project proposal for the Capstone Seminar, it is strongly recommended that students take the 1 credit LESA L405 seminar in the spring semester before the capstone. Students should expect the capstone process to involve at least a one-year time commitment (spring of the junior year and fall of the senior year). Contact the advisor for more information.

When planning for overseas study, please arrange a program any spring other than the spring of the junior year, and any summer and/or fall semester other than fall of the senior year, to avoid the two semesters which will be taken up with capstone work.

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Minor in Leadership, Ethics, and Social Action


Students must complete the following (minimum of 15 credit hours):

  1. LESA L105 (3 cr.), an introductory service learning course.
  2. One course on ethics chosen from PHIL P140, POLS Y105, or REL R170.
  3. One course on social organization chosen from ANTH E105, ANTH E200, SOC S215, or SOC S217.
  4. A civic engagement seminar will be chosen from junior-level courses in a variety of departments. Students will research and write about a community issue or policy. Consult the LESA advisor for the current list of choices when preparing to register.
  5. LESA L405 (3-6 cr.), the capstone project and seminar.
Substitutions for some of the above courses are available. Consult the LESA advisor for more information.

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Course Descriptions

L101 Supplementary Service Learning Component (1-3 cr.) This course permits an instructor to offer an optional, concurrent service learning component to supplement a course already taught. This component extends, reinforces, or applies the learning from the original course to meet a community need. May be repeated for a total of 6 credit hours.

L105 Beyond the Sample Gates (3 cr.) S & H, TFR This service-learning course combines the ethic of volunteerism with critical thinking skills and academic knowledge. The citizenship skills of public life are developed through "service politics," which is how individuals act through community engagement to create a common good. Students will work in a local organization throughout the semester. L105 is the foundations course for the minor in LESA.

L401 Independent Study in Service Learning (1-3 cr.) This course permits a student to design a service learning course within an interest or content area. The independent study may supplement a course in which student is concurrently enrolled. Independent studies in service learning comprise readings, reflective responses, and related community service. May be repeated for a total of 3 credit hours.

L405 LESA Capstone Seminar (1-6 cr.) P: Consent of the LESA Program. The student will integrate learning from an academic interest and LESA courses to develop a useful, tangible product for a community organization. This course will be taken for both the spring and fall semesters. In the spring, the student designs a project in consultation with a faculty advisor for an intellectual framework and with a community group member for articulation of needs. The service project is completed in the fall. During both semesters, the student meets with peers in the seminar to reflect on readings and experiences. May be taken for a maximum of 6 credit hours.

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Last updated: 18 April 2024 03 41 22

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