Academic Staff Induction and Assessment on Implementing Experiential Learning and Reflective Practice

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Authors:
Vera Maria Nistor, Otago Polytechnic, Auckland International Campus, New Zealand
Don Amila Sajeevan Samarasinghe, Otago Polytechnic, Auckland International Campus, New Zealand
Email: vera.nistor@op.ac.nz
Published: December 1, 2019
https://doi.org/10.22492/ije.7.2.08

Citation: Nistor, V. M., & Samarasinghe, D. A. S. (2019). Academic Staff Induction and Assessment on Implementing Experiential Learning and Reflective Practice. IAFOR Journal of Education, 7(2). https://doi.org/10.22492/ije.7.2.08


Abstract

Experiential learning and reflective practice are two effective key learning and teaching strategies that many successful teachers employ as learner-centred education practices. It has been proven that many students appreciate the meaningful learning received through a learner-centred classroom environment.

The aim of this paper is to share the findings of an induction programme focussing on experiential learning and reflective practice, which was designed to enhance the importance of transforming teacher-centred practice into learner-centred practice, with the teacher taking on the role of facilitator. The objectives of this induction programme were to help staff in understanding and incorporating experiential learning models in their teaching practice at a New Zealand tertiary institution.

The paper contains a qualitative analysis of staff perspectives on experiential learning practice taken from their answers to a questionnaire, which followed an online Moodle course. It also contains a quantitative analysis of the data gathered from classroom observations using a digital classroom observation tool for assessment.

The results showed that, although theoretical awareness about experiential learning was not a problem for new academic staff, its practical application was not always fully achieved. Even when lecturers were successfully implementing experiential learning activities in their classes, they were not incorporating reflective practice as part of a complete process. A more conscious incorporation of reflective practice by the academic staff in their classes, will ultimately help students to continue learning through experiences and reflection in their self-directed learning journeys.

Keywords

experiential learning, reflective practice, staff induction programme, teacher performance