Ongoing Call for Submissions

    We seek lively and original articles on research, theory, pedagogy, and other issues pertinent to (a) civic engagement, (b) campus-community partnerships, (c) curriculum-based and co-curricular service-learning, and (d) engaged/public scholarship in higher education. As an interdisciplinary journal invested in diversity, equity, and inclusion, we believe that the perspectives of multiple disciplines adds complexity and depth to the work of community engagement. We seek writing that imagines an audience of informed individuals outside of individual authors’ fields. We aim to allow diverse university and community stakeholders to engage fully in the discovery, dissemination and application of ideas. We especially encourage new and emerging scholars to submit their work.

    Submissions should ask questions that advance the overall field and reflect systematic inquiries that produce new knowledge or understanding and offer a clear intervention in the interdisciplinary field of community engagement. Methodologies may vary widely, but studies should be supported by data, textual evidence, and/or analysis and should support conclusions that have implications for scholars, teachers, and/or practitioners across various geographic locales. While the scope and sample size of submissions may be narrow, studies should offer opportunities for replication, application, or adaptation. We generally do not publish descriptions of individual programs or reflection pieces that do not move beyond lessons learned through the implementation of established community engagement principles.

    We seek writing that probes hard questions and that balances theoretical or conceptual ideas with a sharp focus on the messy, complicated details of shared experience, of real places, of people and politics. We invite submissions that are both rigorous and accessible and that embrace an expansive community perspective. Our aspiration is to appeal to both scholars and educated “lay” readers such as university students, policy professionals, activists, and anyone who may be interested in the complex and interconnected ways we engage one another.

    How to Submit Manuscript Proposals

    Review Submission Guidelines here.

    Because MJCSL is dedicated to promoting quality scholarship that positively impacts both higher education and communities, we do not collect article processing charges (APCs). MJCSL is financially supported and managed by the Edward Ginsberg Center at the University of Michigan and, therefore, is able to be open access and free of APCs.

    Contact Us

    The editorial team is: Neeraja Aravamudan, Cecilia Morales, Nick Tobier.

    If you have any questions, contact us at

    Special Section Call for Proposals: Inequitable Ruptures, Rupturing Inequity: Theorizing the impacts of COVID-19 and racial injustice on Global Service Learning 

    The Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning (MJCSL), in partnership with the Community-based Global Learning Collaborative, is pleased to invite proposals for a special section on Global Service Learning. The section will be guest edited by Dr. Katherine MacDonald and Dr. Jessica Vorstermans and will be included in the Summer 2022 issue of MJCSL. It will also feature an epilogue by Dr. Eric Hartman and Dr. Richard Kiely.


    2020/2021 has presented ruptures that have unveiled ongoing and intersecting social pandemics such as anti-Black and anti-Indigenous racism, white supremacy, patriarchy, classism, and ableism in the context of a global health pandemic (Brand, 2020). We (the guest editors) propose three ruptures as moments for imagining – and doing – otherwise: (i) the Black Lives Matter movement and increased mainstream attention to racial inequity, (ii) COVID-19 and new imaginings of travel, mobility, and safety (iii) mutual aid as increasingly necessary in a pandemic and as a possible relational way forward. This special issue takes these ruptures as a starting point for re-imagining learning and movement as relational.

    We invite articles that take up these ruptures not only as a space for possibility – as the pandemic and new orientations to travel might break down Global Service Learning (GSL) completely – but also as an opportunity to disturb the idea that GSL is in itself a harmonious or reciprocal practice. In this call, we use the term “Global Service Learning” (GSL) to capture a multiplicity of programs that facilitate service work for people across borders.* Much of the framework of GSL assumes and relies on the affective experience of living alongside hosts in the Global South as a pedagogical tool for transformation (Conran 2011; MacDonald 2016); the assumption of GSL pedagogy is that, as students begin to care about those they get to know during GSL experiences, they begin to care more broadly about the world. However, the critical literature suggests that this assumption is, in fact, problematic (Mahrouse 2015, Mostafenezhad 2013); affect and pedagogies are much more complex than this simple causal narrative would suggest. Indeed, while hosts recognize the power and importance of relationships to coalition building, movements, and the transformative potential of GSL, the labor required to build and maintain these relationships should not be forgotten (Hernandez and Rerrie, 2018).

    We position this call in/as a continuing conversation with the critical literature that asks scholars and practitioners to engage with deep critiques of the uneven power relations that GSL reproduces, the depoliticization and decontextualization that often shapes programing, the centering of Western practices and pedagogies, and uplifting of Western students as the primary (or only) participants in GSL experiences (Zemach-Bersin, 2007). This special section also builds on important work in two special sections of the Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning, edited by Eric Hartman and Richard Kiely (2014 & 2015). We seek papers that help scholars and practitioners think through this present moment and re-orient GSL in more just and equitable ways. We are particularly interested in diverse frameworks that invite and guide questions around mutuality and relationality and that center those who experience inequity and oppression as they seek alternative futures for GSL. For example, how does transnational feminist theory orient our attention to the experiences of host mothers and foreground their gendered and racialized labor and the often inequitable compensation of host families? How might critical disability theory’s insistence on a relational understanding of disablement as created through transnational processes of capitalism challenge the possibility of a benevolent helper who is not separate from those processes but, rather, is implicated in them? We welcome both papers that critique and papers that pursue alternative building to combat relational inequity.

    We also particularly welcome scholarly articles that incorporate reflective writing from host and receiving organizations, host families, and/or student participants. We seek papers that uncover the complexity of this moment, plural understandings of how this moment is being lived, and the need for a meaningful centering of knowledge from hosts as we work to build a more reciprocal and equitable GSL during and beyond the pandemic.


    Before submitting, you should thoroughly review MJCSL’s proposal guidelines. The guest editors welcome abstracts via email for informal feedback; please inquire before July 1, 2021. Full proposals for the special section are due October 18th, 2021 and should be emailed to


    Brand, D. (2020, July, 4). On narrative, reckoning and the calculus of living and dying. The Toronto Star. Accessed on January 27, 2021 from:"

    Conran, M. (2011) They really love me!: Intimacy in volunteer tourism. Annals of Tourism Research, 38(4), Pp. 1454-1473.

    Hartman, E. and Kiely, R. (2014). Pushing Boundaries: Introduction to Global Service-Learning Special Section. Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning, 21(1):55-63.

    Hernandez, X. and Rerrie, A. (2018). Where are the Host Mothers? How Gendered Relations Shape the International Experiential Learning Program Experience for Women in the South. Journal of Global Citizenship & Equity Education, 6(1).

    Kiely, R. and Hartman, E. (2015). Introduction: Special Section on Global Service Learning Reflexivity in Research: Reflecting on the Borders and Boundaries of the GSL Field. Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning, 22(1) 48-52.

    MacDonald, K. (2016). Pedagogical Encounters and Volunteer Abroad in Nicaragua. Retrieved from ProQuest Digital Dissertations on January 22, 2017 from"

    Mahrouse, G. (2015). The intensification and commodification of emotion: Declarations of intimacy and bonding in college field trips to the Global South. In Flam, H. & Keres, J. (Eds.). Methods of Exploring Emotions. Routledge: London & New York.

    Mostafanezhad, M. (2013). The Politics of Aesthetics in Volunteer Tourism. Annals of Tourism Research, Vol. 43, pp. 150-169.

    Zemach-Bersin, T. (2007). Global citizenship and study abroad: It’s all about US. Critical Literacy: Theories and Practices, 1(2), 16-28.

    * By borders we mean not only those boundaries between nation-states but also other examples including but not limited to racialized borders, cultural borders, and nation-to-nation borders such as those between Canada and many First Nations.

    Book Reviews 

    The Michigan Journal of Community Service-Learning invites book reviews of recent (published within the last five years) literature about service-learning and community-based research that not only describe a work’s content and approach but also examine the ways in which the work can be applied to pedagogy, practice, and policy.

    Books selected for review should offer new scholarly perspectives on important issues in community-based teaching and learning and engaged scholarship for diverse audiences, including faculty, students, or community members and partners.

    A successful book review will:

    1. Align with the themes and tone reflected in MJCSL, including promoting the vision of academic service-learning, community partnerships, and engaged scholarship as areas of rigorous pedagogy and scholarship.
    2. Describe the book’s content, philosophy, or framework, analyze the arguments or methodology, and clarify how the work may expand upon or contribute to the literature in the field of service-learning, campus-community partnerships, and engaged scholarship.
    3. Identify the primary and secondary audiences for the work, which may address any of the many stakeholders of community-based teaching and learning.
    4. Critically examine the evidence laid out in the book and offer concrete implications for practice, management, or policy.
    5. Identify the new perspectives and expertise that the author(s) bring.
    6. Showcase excellent writing that strays from jargon and may serve practitioners working in a variety of contexts.
    7. Be, in its own right, a valuable contribution to the literature on community service-learning.

    Book reviews should be no more than 1,000 words in length.

    Along with your book review, please submit:

    1. Title and affiliation of each book review author
      Correspondence address for each author, including email
      A 2-3 sentence biography of each author

    For questions or to discuss a possible book review, please contact Suchitra Gururaj at