Title

Getting Ahead: Does Experiential Learning Affect Academic and Career Pathways?

Standing

Undergraduate

Type of Proposal

Poster Presentation

Challenges Theme

Open Challenge

Your Location

Windsor, Ontario, Canada

Faculty

Faculty of Education

Faculty Sponsor

Brandon Sabourin

Abstract/Description of Original Work

Experiential learning (EL) is defined by Kolb (1984) as a process of addressing concepts, experimenting, as well as having deeper learning experiences. Many universities have created EL opportunities; for example, the Volunteer Internship Program, Ignite, practicum, and field placement at the University of Windsor. However, the effectiveness of specific programs remains uncertain due to a lack of research.

Our research project examines the impact of EL opportunities on the academic and career pathway decisions of upper-year undergraduate students in the Faculty of Arts, Humanities, & Social Sciences (FAHSS) at the University of Windsor. Through online survey research, we are looking at how University of Windsor EL opportunities can promote the transfer of knowledge, skills, and attitudes from the postsecondary classroom to the workplace. Our project is guided through the following research questions: What kinds of effects do EL opportunities have on 4th year FAHSS students? Which skills are improved in particular? How does EL impact these students’ future academic or career pathways? As EL programs at the University of Windsor are similar in design to many other institutions, this research will help decide what students need when it comes to hands on learning outside of the classroom.

Our project falls under the Open Challenge as it is unclear as to how the institutional designs of EL programs and other activities affect students’ academic and or career decision making after graduation. This type of research affects multiple disciplines and is not confined to any one of the other challenges or themes.

Special Considerations

N/A

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Getting Ahead: Does Experiential Learning Affect Academic and Career Pathways?

Experiential learning (EL) is defined by Kolb (1984) as a process of addressing concepts, experimenting, as well as having deeper learning experiences. Many universities have created EL opportunities; for example, the Volunteer Internship Program, Ignite, practicum, and field placement at the University of Windsor. However, the effectiveness of specific programs remains uncertain due to a lack of research.

Our research project examines the impact of EL opportunities on the academic and career pathway decisions of upper-year undergraduate students in the Faculty of Arts, Humanities, & Social Sciences (FAHSS) at the University of Windsor. Through online survey research, we are looking at how University of Windsor EL opportunities can promote the transfer of knowledge, skills, and attitudes from the postsecondary classroom to the workplace. Our project is guided through the following research questions: What kinds of effects do EL opportunities have on 4th year FAHSS students? Which skills are improved in particular? How does EL impact these students’ future academic or career pathways? As EL programs at the University of Windsor are similar in design to many other institutions, this research will help decide what students need when it comes to hands on learning outside of the classroom.

Our project falls under the Open Challenge as it is unclear as to how the institutional designs of EL programs and other activities affect students’ academic and or career decision making after graduation. This type of research affects multiple disciplines and is not confined to any one of the other challenges or themes.