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Tips for Students

What is Experiential Learning?

In its simplest form, experiential learning means learning from experience, or learning by doing.  You can engage in Extra-Curricular activities at KPU and learn from the experience, but not receive credit.  Or, you can gain credit through service learning courses, where application and engagement with course concepts through service and collaboration with the community, bring key concepts to life.  If you take Co-op courses, then your experience with the community will also be paid.  So, there is a continuum of activity.  See our definitions page and check out the icons for Pay / Credit, etc.

Are Experiential courses harder or easier?

Experiential learning courses, or service learning courses, are different from regular courses. There is often an expectation of volunteering with an organization, or a large-scale project. Having a flexible schedule certainly helps for that to go smoothly, but usually arrangements can be made to accommodate different needs. With the extra time commitment, it's probably a good idea to avoid getting overloaded if you're already completing 5 courses in a term, and have a really tough work schedule. Or, to at least go in to the course knowing that your time might be stretched thin. That said, often these courses rely less on long essays for final assignments, and incorporate evaluation using different assignment methods, which students can sometimes find refreshing and encouraging.

I had one Experiential Learning class, and I liked it.  How do I find another class like that?

Oftentimes, the most useful collaborations can come from an unexpected partnering. Watch some short videos highlighting some Experiential Learning Coursework.

If you are interested in a position that is paid, then contact Co-operative Education.

The following programs offer Co-operative Education Work Terms:

  • Accounting
  • Criminology
  • Entrepreneurial Leadership
  • Environmental Protection Technology
  • Human Resources Management
  • Information Technology
  • Marketing Management

If you are interested in Field Schools, then check out current options.

If you are interested in Extra-Curricular or Co-Curricular experiences, then check out the opportunities listed.

If you are interested in the Volunteering opportunities that are posted for KPU students, check here for current opportunities

If you are interested in a service learning course, for credit, then see a list of intensive Service Learning Courses & Practicum courses, or see an archived list of instructors who often offer service learning courses.

For anything else, feel free to contact instructors directly, or

The marks for the Experiential Learning experience I had seem to be unfair. What can I do?

Consult the KPU Students Rights and Responsibilities document in the Current Calendar and speak with your instructor.

I am not attending KPU right now, but want to know more about Experiential Learning?

Email to learn more about Experiential Learning at KPU, or to get some help with this type of experience at other institutions in the Lower Mainland.