Access Type

Open Access Dissertation

Date of Award

January 2011

Degree Type


Degree Name




First Advisor

Gwen Gorzelsky


Service-learning continues to be a popular pedagogical approach within composition studies. Despite a number of studies that document a range of positive impacts on students, faculty, institutions, and community members, the relationship between service-learning and student writing outcomes is not well understood. This study presents the results of a genre analysis of student-authored ethnographies composed in four distinct sections of a service-learning--based intermediate writing course at a Midwestern urban research university. Results of the analysis are then used to develop a contextualized writing assessment framework to evaluate student writing outcomes and to consider the implications of using contemporary genre theory for both service-learning and writing program assessment.