One of the articles I chose to read is called "On Defining Experiential Education" by Laura Joplin. In this article, Joplin describes a Five-Stage Model and Nine Characteristics pertaining to experiential education. Some of my thoughts on her Five-Stage Model and Nine Characteristics follow:
In order to truly experience learning, the learner must reflect on that experience. One way to do this is to keep a journal/blog on the things experienced.
- Step 1: Focus = Presenting the activity - this can be direct or indirect depending on the activity
- Step 2: Action = Interact with the activity - this does not mean education. It means to do the work to obtain the education. A good example of interaction is the learner deciding what is important to the activity and what is not. A textbook is not a good example as it does not allow the learner to decide. THE LEARNER MUST HOLD THE RESPONSIBILITY.
- Step 3-4: Support/Feedback = Showing an interest in the learner - the "learnee" (teacher) helps when needed and discusses progress with the learner.
- Step 5: Debrief = Reviewing the learners' activity in an organized fashion - this can be done through reflective papers, journals, and group work. REFLECTION is a big part of this step.
I will not list all of the characteristics here, but simply list my impressions of what they mean.
Experiential Education/Learning is:
To summarize: Experiential Education/Learning not only allows the learner to learn, but also allows the "learnee" to learn from the learner. The learner and learnee should be engaged in the activity and each other during the learning process.
*Article taken from Journal of Experiential Education, 1981