Experiential Education

What is Experiential Education?

Experiential education goes by different names - internships, co-ops, practical experiences, research experiences, field experiences, etc. - but the one thing they all have in common is they give students valuable career-related experiences that make a difference in post-graduate employment.

How does experiential education connect to the mission of Xavier University?

The variations of active learning can be encapsulated in one term, experiential education, which is a process through which a learner constructs knowledge, skill, and value from direct experiences. The activities that constitute experiential education are consistent with, and in many ways central to, the mission of the university. Building critical thinkers, who are sensitive and responsive to both the requirements of their chosen career and their responsibilities to the larger communities they inhabit, is increasingly important in higher education. We understand that internships operate differently from co-ops, practica, and other experiences but also recognize their connectedness to other opportunities under experiential education as well.

Experiential Education:  General Information

The role of the Career Development Office staff pertaining to experiential education:

  1. Assist students in all aspects of their search
  2. Help with resume development and review
  3. Train students on proper and advantageous interviewing techniques.

In addition to the CDO staff assistance, we have numerous online and print resources to guide students in finding an appropriate experiential educational experience.

What constitutes experiential education?

Each department varies as to what constitutes a quality experience but survey results from the summer of 2008 found that most departments ask that the experience relate to the student's major and give ample quality work for the student to perform.  Not all departments require the experience be paid and students average 12-16 hours per week at their site.  Most departments ask students to complete learning objectives prior to their experience, sign a work agreement, and do some type of project at the end of their experience.  If your department is interested in setting up an internship for students, feel free to contact Jonika Moore-Diggs to see what other departments are doing on campus.