Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 2016


International service learning, global cultural competencies, professional education, exploratory research


This article posits international service learning (ISL) as a pedagogy that supports internationalization in the field of public affairs and one known to advance global cultural competency in other professions. We present a baseline study of the extent to which ISL is being made available to master’s students in NASPAA member programs, and the extent to which existing programs are responding to key challenges of ethics and assessment. The exploratory analysis shows a lack of clear understanding of ISL in professional public affairs education and very few ISL programs being offered in the field. Among the programs that do exist, there is a commitment to ethical practices and to creative approaches to overcoming challenges. However, these programs have yet to apply systematic assessment, particularly in evaluating their contributions to global cultural competencies. We conclude with a series of recommendations targeted to public affairs faculty, program directors, and NASPAA.

Publisher Attribution

Appe, S., Rubaii, N., & Stamp, K. (2016). Advancing global cultural competencies: International service learning within NASPAA member programs. Journal of Public Affairs Education, 22(2), 67-87.



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