Engaging Faculty to Maximize the Impact of Off-Campus Experiential Learning
High-impact practices have transformed undergraduate education. Among these practices is immersive or experiential learning — study abroad/away, community engagement, and internships. Research suggests that students make the strongest learning gains from high-impact practices when they apply metacognitive skills, critical observation, analysis, and reflection, and test the alignment between theory and practice. To maximize the value of experiential learning, it is imperative that ACM faculty gain expertise to guide students in developing and using metacognitive skills.
To build this capacity, a team from Beloit, Carleton, and St. Olaf will organize two multidisciplinary summer workshops in 2018-19 and develop an online community of practice and innovation. Participating faculty will engage in experiential learning and examine evidence-based approaches that prepare students for study abroad/away programs, course-based community engagement, and credit-bearing internships.
The project will bring faculty with long involvement in experiential education together with early-career faculty. As these faculty members learn together, they will improve and sustain their own experiential programs and disseminate what they learn on their home campuses.
Ultimately, this project will enhance student learning and secure the investments liberal arts colleges make in off-campus high-impact learning practices.
Note: Content adapted from original project proposal.