The Experiential Learning requirement engages students in the first-hand discovery of knowledge through observation and participation in activities, most often in field-based settings outside the classroom. This inductive process of “learning by doing and reflecting” is supported by theory-based information. In these courses, students compare and analyze issues, problems, and ideas through the lenses of their own personal experiences and evolving intellectual worldview.
Experiential learning may take place in a regularly scheduled course, an approved internship, a Study Abroad course, or in an independent study approved on a case-by-case basis (utilizing the proper Independent Study Approval Form). All such courses may be offered in the student’s major and may count for both major field and Liberal Studies requirements. When more than four credit hours are earned from such an experience – for example, an eight-hour internship – four hours may be counted toward Liberal Studies requirements and four hours toward major program requirements. Experiential Learning is typically taken in the junior year as major field or other foundational knowledge is essential to ensure a successful outcome.