“Tell me and I’ll forget, teach me and I’ll remember, involve me and I’ll learn”-Benjamin Franklin
His quote remains true to this day and is directly related to our topic of discussion – ‘Experiential Learning’ and is it really the future of learning.
Meaning of Experiential Learning
It is a form of learning whereby students are “educated through first-hand experience. They acquire skills, knowledge and experience outside of traditional academic classroom settings. It includes more of internships, studies abroad, field trips, field research and service learning projects.” And with the advent of technological innovation, making use of various educational technologies and Virtual Reality further supports the goals of experiential learning.
To get a glimpse of the experiential/collaborative learning environment in true sense, let’s check out the video below as it provides a glimpse of experiential classroom activity conducted by Disney College Program.
How Technology is Enhancing Experiential Learning?
With the innovation of educational technology, we find new forms of experiential learning coming up into surface. Such new forms are helping both the educator and learner community in various ways.
For the teachers, with the use of educational technology, they are able to make classroom a center of active learning hub and further assisting them to cater to the personalized needs of the students to a large extent. On the other hand, by making use of various digital tools and technologies, students are allowed to get motivated, engage various approaches to learning and most importantly adopt technology skills that is fundamental to close job skill gap in the recent time.
As far as new forms of experiential learning is concerned, most of the educational technologies are designed in the line of experiential learning principles and this is why they are enabling new ways for students to get real world experiences in the classroom. In pursuance to create active learning environment in classroom, we find fresh concepts such as blended learning and flip classroom techniques getting introduced for educators to apply and create a stimulated environment for learning in new era.
Similarly, to make STEM learning more productive, we see the use of Virtual Reality in the classroom as it offers new dimension to which tough concepts of this stream of education can be learned in simple ways. Well, examples of such technological breakthrough are continuously evolving as with change in the process of learning experience, the traditional approaches are also getting replaced by new techniques.
A diagrammatic representation of how technology is introducing new forms of experiential learning to help you understand it better.
The image originally appeared here
Why is experiential learning the future of learning?
Well, the answer to this question is directly related to changing time and does such form of learning process fulfill the requirements of changing time. And to understand this, we need to take a look at the advantages of experiential learning, for here lies the answer to the question as to why ‘experiential learning is the future of learning.’
- The first and extremely essential benefit of experiential learning is that it offers accelerated learning experience as it is not learning by rote but ‘learning by doing.’ Hence through such a learning experience, learners are able to critically think, gain problem solving and decision making abilities. Check out the pictorial representation of experiential learning model for better understanding of accelerated learning experience.
- Assists in bridging the gap between theory and practice that turned up a major issue in the traditional learning system. As in experiential learning, a student learns by doing so trainees get a first-hand experience of practicing what is being taught and which allows them to retain concepts and ideas for a long time.
- Increases the engagement level of learners to a large extent as they focus immensely on collaboration and learning from each other. And with engagement, learners also gain a benefit of ownership of the outcomes as learners are closely involved into problem-solving activity or event.
- It is no unknown fact that no two students are alike and therefore their pace of learning too differs. In experiential learning process, such factor is dealt with care as it offers the benefit of personalized learning facility wherein a student can learn at their own pace with practice and guidance of an educator.
- Experiential learning has great ability of providing exceptional return on investment as compared to traditional learning experience. Not to say, it enhances the knowledge and skills of students and with it what it does is, it effectively deals the personal and social influences by addressing the individual and community feelings and emotions. It goes beyond classroom learning to ensure there is high level of retention in students.
Although adopted late, but with experiential learning process replacing the traditional rote learning system, we can now witness the benefits of it assisting the educators to resolve the issues that existed in the education space for so long. Thus we conclude, experiential learning is not just a momentary solution but one that with its flexibility will retain for a long time in the future too. Drop us a note on what you feel about experiential learning and if you agree with us that it is indeed the future of learning.
In addition, if you wish to get an insight on how adoption of experiential learning is growing in India, check here.