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University of Colorado Denver

Experiential Learning Center
 

Experiential Learning Center

What is Experiential Learning?


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Experiential learning is a process through which students develop knowledge, skills, and values from direct experiences outside a traditional academic setting. Experiential learning encompasses a variety of activities including internships, service learning, undergraduate research, study abroad, and other creative and professional work experiences. Well-planned, supervised and assessed experiential learning programs can stimulate academic inquiry by promoting interdisciplinary learning, civic engagement, career development, cultural awareness, leadership, and other professional and intellectual skills.

Learning that is considered "experiential" contain all the following elements:

  1. Reflection, critical analysis and synthesis
  2. Opportunities for students to take initiative, make decisions, and be accountable for the results
  3. Opportunities for students to engage intellectually, creatively, emotionally, socially, or physically
  4. A designed learning experience that includes the possibility to learn from natural consequences, mistakes, and successes
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