Handbook on Teaching and Learning in Political Science and International Relations
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Handbook on Teaching and Learning in Political Science and International Relations

Edited by John Ishiyama, William J. Miller and Eszter Simon

With a focus on providing concrete teaching strategies for scholars, the Handbook on Teaching and Learning in Political Science and International Relations blends both theory and practice in an accessible and clear manner. In an effort to help faculty excel as classroom teachers, the expert contributors offer representation from various types of institutions located throughout the world. Split into three distinct parts, this book discusses curriculum and course design, teaching subject areas and in class teaching techniques.
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Chapter 30: Experiential education in political science and international relations

Elizabeth A. Bennion


Experiential education is based on the belief that optimal learning occurs through experience. Students learn best when participating actively in hands-on opportunities that connect content to application in the real world. Experiential education is an approach to learning in which educators ‘purposefully engage with learners in direct experience and focused reflection in order to increase knowledge, develop skills, clarify values and develop people’s capacity to contribute to their communities’. Educators’ desire to enhance student learning through high-impact teaching practices is bringing experiential learning into (physical and virtual) classrooms. Experiential learning is no longer relegated to non-academic internships, work and community service; experiential education, as a philosophy of learning, requires that experience be combined with critical reflection to promote learning. Experiential education promotes student engagement and furthers defined learning objectives through active ‘hands-on’ learning inside and outside of the classroom.

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