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Experience-based learning, or experiential learning, is a learner-centered approach to education in which students gain knowledge by actively experiencing and reflecting on situations that are tied to the real world. The use of experience-based learning in an online education setting offers students the opportunity to engage in experiences that are directly reflective of what they are likely to see in a work environment. This entry examines what elements are found in experience-based learning environments, what learning outcomes are viable for experience-based learning, and what theorists have influenced the development of experience-based learning.


There are three primary elements of an experience-based learning environment: (1) a framework that guides the way in which students will perceive the experience, (2) an opportunity for students to either directly or artificially ...

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