Ask yourself: How many of your students will have a career or a life in which their primary responsibilities are to read a textbook, listen to someone else lecture, and then take a test?
If faculty and staff want their students to be successful after graduation then they need to ensure that students are building the employability-skills and life-skills that students will use after graduation – experiential learning fosters these skills.
Capital University’s CELT offers workshops to help faculty and staff develop and implement Experiential Learning activities with students. Below, CELT provides definitions and examples of Experiential Learning.
Community-Engaged Learning: Community engagement describes collaboration between institutions of higher education and their larger communities (local, regional/state, national, global) for the mutually beneficial exchange of knowledge and resources in a context of partnership and reciprocity. The purpose of community engagement is the partnership of college and university knowledge and resources with those of the public and private sectors to enrich scholarship, research, and creative activity; enhance curriculum, teaching and learning; prepare educated, engaged citizens; strengthen democratic values and civic responsibility; address critical societal issues; and contribute to the public good.
Civic Engagement: Civic engagement is ‘working to make a difference in the civic life of our communities and developing the combination of knowledge, skills, values and motivation to make that difference. It means promoting the quality of life in a community, through both political and non-political processes.’ (Excerpted from Civic Responsibility and Higher Education, Oryx Press, 2000) In addition, civic engagement encompasses actions wherein individuals participate in activities of personal and public concern that are both individually life enriching and socially beneficial to the community.
Fieldwork/Internships: An official program offered by an employer that includes part time or fulltime employment that might be paid or unpaid, and course work that helps students integrate their experiences with the employer and their course work.
POGIL (Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning): Student teams use specially designed activities that have these qualities: Self-managed teams that employ the instructor as a facilitator of learning rather than a source of information; Students guided through an exploration to construct understanding, and Discipline content to facilitate the development of important process skills, including higher-level thinking and the ability to learn and to apply knowledge in new contexts.
PBL (Project-based Learning): Investigation of an authentic, engaging and complex question or problem that ideally has the following qualities: A focus on student learning outcomes such as critical thinking/problem solving, communication, collaboration, and self-management; A meaningful problem to solve or a question to answer; Rigorous, extended process of asking questions, finding resources, and applying information; Real-world context, tasks and tools, quality standards, or impact – or speaks to students’ personal concerns, interests, and issues in their lives; Student control over how they work and what they create; Student reflection on learning, the effectiveness of their inquiry and project activities, the quality of work, obstacles, and how to overcome them; Opportunities to give, receive, and use feedback to improve process and products; and Public dissemination of products, beyond the classroom.
Role-Play Simulation: Students are involved in “as-if” situations, by way of simulated actions and circumstances and are expected to act “as-if” specific conditions and situations exist, with different roles implying various types of behaviors, goals and arguing. Student learning increases as the number of perspectives they take increase.
UR (Undergraduate Research): An inquiry or investigation conducted by an undergraduate student that makes an original intellectual or creative contribution to the discipline.
CBR (Community-Based Research): Community-based research (CBR) involves collaboration between… researchers and community members in the design and implementation of research projects aimed at meeting community-identified needs… CBR is done with rather than on the community… CBR holds as a central tenant the involvement of community members in every stage of the research process… CBR has a critical action component such that the knowledge produced has the potential to bring about some positive social change