Teaching Students of all Backgrounds: “Yes, Experiential Learning is Possible, Fun, and Effective Online!”

Session Description
Experiential learning (EL) has a history spanning over centuries and while EL has gained much popularity in recent years, some educators still find it challenging to create effective learning environments (Eyler, 2017). In the online classroom, EL may seem difficult to integrate when first debated; however, research demonstrates that experiential education is vital in all settings in order to effectively teach real-world knowledge of local or global challenges and practices (Hoffman & Silverberg, 2015). In today’s technology dominant world, educators are encouraged to integrate experiential learning into their classrooms to prepare future professionals with varying backgrounds and interests so that they may become successful in their career post-graduation (Twynstra & Dworatzek, 2016). As scholarly literature highlights, EL can be applied in numerous modalities and academic disciplines and thus, allows much creativity for curriculum designers, faculty, and students. This presentation will provide greater insight into EL, its history, purpose, and potential in the online classroom. General examples for EL application will be discussed in conjunction with the advantages for using this method, based on recent literature. Lastly, EL examples from Ashford University’s Bachelor of Arts Health and Wellness program will be shared to demonstrate various options for integrating this approach when teaching students of all backgrounds across the globe. As online learning continuously evolves, EL should be strongly considered when designing courses and instructing diverse student populations to ensure enhanced enjoyment of learning, student satisfaction, and student success.
Sandra Rebeor
Sandra Rebeor, Ashford University, San Diego, CA, USA
Sandra Rebeor is an Assistant Professor and Lead Faculty member in the B.A. Health and Wellness program within the College of Health, Human Services, and Science at Ashford University. Mrs. Rebeor has been teaching online since 2011. She earned her BBA in Business Administration with a minor in Management at Campbell University and her Master of Science in Health Sciences – Emergency and Disaster Management at Trident University International. Mrs. Rebeor is an ACE-certified Group Fitness Instructor and currently pursues her doctorate degree in Health and Wellness Psychology at the University of the Rockies and is scheduled to graduate in the Summer of 2018. Her professional experience ranges from working with the German government to academic and military environments. She also loves to volunteer at her children’s school and in the community as Track and Field Assistant Coach.
Christine McMahon
Christine McMahon, Ashford University , San Diego, CA, USA
Dr. Christine McMahon is an Assistant Professor in the College of Health, Human Services, and Science at Ashford University. She serves as the Program Chair for the Bachelor of Arts in Health and Wellness program. She has a Doctorate Degree in Health Education and Promotion from AT Still University in Kirksville, MO and a Master’s Degree in Exercise Science as well as a Bachelor’s Degree in Kinesiology and Sports Studies from Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, IL. She is a Certified Health Education Specialist and a Certified Athletic Trainer. She has taught in the online environment since 2010.
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