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Research Articles

Vol. 27 No. 3

Community Involvement in Course-Based Higher Education Activities: Exploring Its Definition, Guiding Principles, and Strategies—A Narrative Review

July 7, 2021


Higher education institutions are becoming increasingly embedded in their surrounding communities in order to learn from and respond to their often complex problems. Potential mutually beneficial—or reciprocal— collaborations between students, faculty members, and communities are being set up, but few researchers have explored how community actors are involved in collaborative decision-making processes. To fill this gap, this narrative review explores the current literature on community involvement processes in course-based higher education activities. Our research yielded a framework of definitions, guiding principles, and strategies to achieve more successful community involvement in this context. Seven guiding principles and related strategies are presented: alignment, shared ownership, balancing power relations, joint learning and knowledge creation, representation, immersion, and relationship building. The narrative review gave insights into the way community involvement is currently approached in course-based higher education activities and established a basis for understanding and shaping higher education–community collaboration.