Tales of Tutors: The Role of Narrative in Language Learning and Service-Learning



Abstract: This article examines the role of narrative in the learning process of language tutors in a university service-learning course involving collaboration between an institution of higher learning and public high schools in an urban setting. The tutors' personal narrative reflections offer multiple perspectives on interactions of tutors with high school students, tutors with cooperating teachers, and cooperating teachers with high school students. For near-peer tutors, more advanced students close in age to those they assist (Imel, 1994; Whitman, 1988), narratives not only provide a vehicle for structured reflection upon their contributions to the language learning process and classroom setting, but also develop their insight into broader personal, institutional, and social issues that impact education systems.