Risk Management


The Service Learning Initiative  wants to provide faculty and students with useful resources and best practices to protect everyone involved in service learning.  If you do not find the information you are looking for below, please contact the Service Learning Initiative Director, the Office of Risk Management, or General Counsel.  

tibetan children


Background Checks

Students who work directly with clients (particularly children, elderly and those with disabilities) may be required to undergo background checks. Background checks are processed by CourtHouse Concepts. If your students interact with vulnerable populations, background checks should likely be administered. Various levels of checks are required for different courses.  Social Work courses may also require a drug/alcohol screen. Contact the Service Learning Director for more information on background checks. Go to Background Checks section for details.


Protection of Minors


Liability Insurance Policies

Students who work directly with clients (particularly children, elderly and those with disabilities) may be required to carry professional liability insurance.  The University of Arkansas  currently provides a blanket student professional liability policy for student nurses, social workers, psychologists, rehabilitation assistants, recreation management interns and in other health related areas.  Please contact Brooke Moore, Director of Risk and Property Management for insurance rates and regarding the need for and availability of insurances for other service learning activities.

Go to Policies for Students and Faculty section for details.


Photo Release and Consent

If your students will be taking photographs, videos, or any other representation of the community partners, best practices suggest having a photo release and consent document on file.  Many agencies and schools already have clients complete such forms.  Work with your community partner to determine if releases have been signed, how the releases will be kept on file and which individuals should not be publicized.  Taking this precautionary step is an important part of the course-agency partnership.  See this Sample Release.



If your students will be traveling off campus to complete the service learning activity, you should review the student travel policy.  If travel is outside of the Northwest Arkansas community, faculty should talk to the Service Learning  Director and the Office of Risk Management to discuss the need for travel insurance.