The EX[L] Center for Experiential Learning
Experiential learning is a process through which students gain knowledge and skills while advancing their understanding of themselves as effective members of our evolving society. Fundamentally interdisciplinary in nature, experiential learning opportunities challenge students to integrate information from a range of fields or perspectives and to work with team members or others and in the process to explore new ways of doing and thinking about a specific topic or concern.
Experiential learning at UA is distinguished by the following elements. First, experiential learning opportunities engage students actively in a combination of intellectual, physical, creative, social, and/or emotional ways. Second, these opportunities require students to take initiative, participate in decision-making, and stand accountable for outcomes of their activity. Third, experiential learning is structured so that reflection on individual and/or group activity occurs across the semester. Finally, this reflection leads to critical thinking, relevant analysis and synthesis, and a consideration of how the experience has shifted the students’ understanding of themselves as scholars and global citizens.
Experiential learning at UA includes a wide variety of activities: internships, co-ops, practicum and clinical activities, service learning, student teaching, fieldwork, participatory research, community-based research, lab-based research, study abroad, unclasses, juried exhibitions, and performances.