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What is Experiential Learning

Experiential Learning is learning through reflection on doing. It focuses on the individual’s experience, and is a way to connect academics to the “real world” by actively participating in the world, not just reading about it. Forms of experiential learning include: Cooperative Education, Course-embedded Projects, Service-Learning, and Independent Study.

  • Cooperative Education: integrating classroom-based education with structured, practical field experience relating to the student’s occupational goals
    • Examples include: apprenticeships, clinical, internships, job shadowing and mentoring
  • Course-Embedded Projects: brief, out-of-class projects are included in the syllabi to improve the students’ understanding of course material
    • Examples include: externship, fieldwork, academic service-learning, volunteerism
  • Service-Learning: throughout the course students are engaged in service projects and reflection activities that focus on community need relative to the student’s field of study
    • Examples include: academic service-learning, volunteerism service-learning, civic engagement, fieldwork
  • Independent Study: learning outcomes and competencies are agreed upon between staff and student for the student to accomplish outside of lecture or typical instruction
    • Examples include: field work, internship, practicum, conferences/workshops

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world” —Anne Frank

May 20, 2015