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Experience Learning in a mountain stream

Experience Learning Resources Available

Experience Learning, our initiative to enhance students’ educational experiences through experiential learning, has shifted into high gear.

This fall, there will be more staff support to help you develop Experience Learning courses, and we’re working with the Undergraduate Council and Faculty Senate to finalize the process for designating courses that meet the definition of Experience Learning. We also hope to roll out a faculty fellows mentoring program and offer grants to faculty members who want to revamp existing courses or create new courses to incorporate Experience Learning activities.

Staff support

John Walker

John Walker

Over the summer, John Walker began work as our Experience Learning assessment coordinator. He is tasked with measuring the impact of Experience Learning efforts in faculty-led courses, co-curricular activities, and extracurricular activities.

Walker came from Schoolcraft College in Livonia, Michigan, where he was the assessment specialist for the school’s performance-based learning initiative, Core Abilities. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan, and his master’s degree in policy studies from the University of Sydney in Australia.

He joins Experience Learning Director Christopher Lavan, who has been on board since January.

Training and information

Throughout the year, the Tennessee Teaching and Learning Center will offer workshops to introduce interested faculty to Experience Learning.

An encore of the Foundations series will be offered twice:

  • “Collaboration” will be offered from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. on September 14 and from 2:10 to 4:10 p.m. on September 15.
  • “Reflection” will be offered from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. on October 12 and from 2:10 to 4:10 p.m. on October 13.

The final two courses, “Motivation” and “Real World Problem Solving,” will be offered in November, with dates and times to be announced soon.

We also have a new resource guide that explains what Experience Learning is, how it benefits students, and how faculty can integrate it into their classes. It can be picked up from the Experience Learning office, 618 Greve Hall.

Grants and mentors

Later this fall, we will roll out faculty development grants and a faculty fellows mentoring program. These grants will help faculty integrate experiential learning to existing courses or create new courses. Faculty fellows who have led experiential learning activities will mentor colleagues who are interested and want to know more.

Experience Learning is our Quality Enhancement Plan, a requirement of the reaffirmation process by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. It was approved in 2015.

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