The SIIP project will create new opportunities for students to participate in community-connected experiential learning opportunities that involve intergenerational activities with isolated older adults.
What Is Experiential Learning?
Experiential learning provides students with opportunities to actively participate in experiences connected to a community outside of school. This “community” could be local, national, or global. This connection can involve being physically present (an on-site experience), being present through the use of various communication technologies (a virtual experience), or a combination of the two (a blended experience). Students reflect on their experiences to learn from them, so they can apply their learning to decisions and actions in various aspects of their lives (Ontario, 2016).
What Are the Goals of Experiential Learning?
- Increases motivation and engagement, encouraging self-directed learning;
- Facilitates the exploration of the relationship between academic theory and practice, increasing clarity around academic and career goals;
- Increases understanding and perceptions around workplace cultures;
- Enhances professional networks;
- Helps students better understand work realities and expectations;
- Provides opportunity to gain career-related experiences, clarifying employment and career goals;
- Builds leadership, technical, and professional skills;
- Increases confidence, maturity, and self-management;
- Improves problem-solving, critical thinking, research, communication, and teamwork skills;
- Develops skills to transition to the workforce;
- In cases of paid placements, provides earnings to assist with financial obligations; and
- Builds citizenship skills (Niagara College Canada, 2019).
Experiential Learning Resources
|A Practical Guide for Work-Integrated Learning|
Effective Practices to Enhance the Educational Quality of Structured Work Experiences Offered through Colleges and Universities, published by the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario.
|Community-Connected Experiential Learning Policy Framework (2016)|
This consultation document sets out a proposed policy framework for community-connected experiential learning in Ontario schools, from Kindergarten to Grade 12.
|Council for Experiential Learning|
The Council for Experiential Learning (CEL), a volunteer body with members from the private, public and voluntary sectors, was created to foster experiential learning (EL) connections, recognize businesses with the Experiential Learning Employer Excellence and Experiential Learning Employer Champion awards, and advise government. The work of the CEL is supported by the Ontario Ministry of Education.
|Experiential Learning in Long-Term Care: A Guidebook for Building Partnerships Between Secondary Schools and Long-Term Care Homes|
Developed by the Ontario Centre for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care (CLRI) at the Research Institute for Aging, this guidebook supports long-term care or retirement homes and secondary schools in establishing meaningful and impactful partnerships to create experiential learning placements for students, including cooperative education and Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) placements.
|Experiential Learning Toolkit|
The EL Toolkit is a website that provides information, examples, and templates for designing, delivering, facilitating, and evaluating experiential learning in post-secondary education.
|Learning by Doing: Postsecondary Experiential Education|
A resource for Ontario's postsecondary educators, written by Mary Wilson and Kyle Mackie.
|Ontario Cooperative Education Association|
OCEA is a not-for-profit professional organization of Ontario Cooperative Education and Experiential Learning Professionals that develops and facilitates access to information, resources and other supports relevant to OCEA members and other Experiential Learning Professionals in the province of Ontario.
|Ontario Ministry of Education — Experiential Learning|
Information and resources from the Ontario Ministry of Education.
|The Learning Exchange: Creating Pathways to Success – Experiential Learning|
Creating Pathways to Success puts students at the centre of their own learning, viewing them as the architects of their own lives. Students are encouraged to discover who they are, explore opportunities, pursue their passions, and design personal pathways to success.
|Work Integrated Learning Open Module|
Work Integrated Learning (WIL) has become a core element of post-secondary instruction and a crucial means by which applied and experiential learning is infused into curriculum in highly meaningful and professionally relevant ways. This comprehensive set of 31 open access, learner-centered modules supports WIL preparedness among post-secondary students. Developed by Niagara College Canada, these modules represent over 35 hours of rich content that can be used by faculty, career-services staff, and employers to support student learning in applied and work-integrated settings.