New Resources for Experiential Learning

From: Susan McCahan, Vice-Provost, Academic & Innovations in Undergraduate Education
Date: November 6, 2019
Re:  New Resources for Experiential Learning

The Office of the Vice-Provost, Innovations in Undergraduate Education is excited to launch three new resources to support the development and coordination of experiential learning programming across the university. In response to increased interest from internal and external stakeholders regarding the ways in which students, faculty, staff, and external partners can engage in and support meaningful experiential learning opportunities, the OVPIUE has supported the development of the following resources:

Experiential Learning Hub

The Experiential Learning Hub is a new online platform for students, faculty and staff, and external partners to discover and navigate the wide range of experiential learning opportunities at the University of Toronto.

The Experiential Learning Hub is intended to serve as the entry-point for exploring the different types of experiential learning, discovering where to connect to tri-campus opportunities, learning about the available resources and tools to support experiential learning, and understanding the various guidelines and procedures that should be considered for off-campus experiences.

There are a number of other exciting items on the Hub, including:

  • Guidelines and Procedures — Experiential learning often involves partners external to the University with students going off-campus to work, shadow professionals, and complete research. There are specific guidelines and procedures that must be considered when experiential learning opportunities are being developed.
  • Experiential Learning Profiles – These are a snapshot into some of the incredible experiential learning opportunities currently taking place at the University of Toronto. Users can browse through all the profiles or filter based on type or the home campus of the initiative.
  • Decision Trees for Students and External Partners– Tailored to students and external partners, these tools allow for greater reflection upon one’s goals and objectives and then matches the user with the most appropriate type of experiential learning.
  • FAQ– This section provides answers to common questions about experiential learning.
  • Links to Local Offices – Since this website is intended to serve as the entry-point for experiential learning at the University of Toronto, these links connect users with the local office that best fits their needs to learn more about these opportunities.

If you are involved in an experiential learning opportunity that you would like profiled or would like to see additional information or scenarios included to the Guidelines and Policies, please contact: Lauren Hudak, Special Projects Officer, OVPIUE at

We encourage members of the University committee to embed information and/or a link to the Experiential Learning Hub within local experiential learning or teaching and learning websites, and share this website with your colleagues, students and partners.

Faculty and Staff Course and Program Development Resources

To further assist faculty and staff, Professor Ashley Stirling, Vice Dean of Academic Affairs at the Faculty of Kinesiology and Physical Education has developed a range of resources that are designed to support faculty and staff design and enhance their experiential learning courses and programs. Pedagogically grounded and empirically informed, the resources were created in consultation with a tri-campus working group and draw upon the collective expertise and experiences of faculty and staff across the institution. They focus on advancing the quality development and delivery of both curricular and co-curricular experiential learning opportunities.

Student Experiential Learning Modules

To help students understand the different components of experiential learning and how to best prepare for such opportunities, a series of short, online Student Learning Modules have been created. These modules were identified as of interest to the community through a consultative process, designed and informed by subject matter experts in the relevant areas, and constructed by the University’s Online Learning Strategies team. Eight subject specific modules have been created, ranging from topics focused on student development, such as “Setting Goals for Experiential Learning” and “Developing a Personal Learning Plan for Competency Development”, to topics introducing students to specific types of experiential learning, such as “Community-Engaged Learning”.  Faculty and staff can choose to incorporate these student-facing modules into their experiential learning course or program as “ready-to-use” modules or can choose to modify these open educational resources licensed under Creative Commons to support local adaptation and re-use. For questions and consultation regarding local adaptation, please complete the request form found on the Experiential Learning Modules site.