1. Applied research projects
  2. Campus entrepreneurship/incubators
  3. Case studies
  4. Interactive simulations
  5. Labs
  6. Performance-based learning

Integrating experiential learning activities into your classroom can be a great way to engage students and expand their understanding of course content.

Be sure to integrate opportunities for structured reflection before, during, and/or after the experience.

There are many types of classroom-based experiential learning activities at Carleton, including applied research projects, case studies, and labs. Continue reading to learn more about each type.

Applied research projects

Applied research projects involve a process of substantial discovery, synthesis, and/or application of information to solving a particular problem in an original way. The research process can be undertaken independently or in teams.

Watch this presentation by Dr. John Willison (University of Adelaide) for more ideas.

Campus entrepreneurship/incubators

Campus entrepreneurship/incubators give students the opportunity to cultivate, organize, and/or manage a business, social enterprise, or creative idea from development through implementation.

Read about campus incubators in a virtual environment.

Case studies

Case studies provide an opportunity for students to apply their learning to real-life scenarios by working through complex, ambiguous real-world problems.

Watch a webinar (recording) about case teaching in the virtual environment here and here.

Interactive simulations

Interactive simulations invite students to engage with academic content through content-specific activities designed to simulate “real life” situations, such as simulations, demonstrations, archival or design work, and/or role-plays.

Watch a webinar (recording) about simulations in the virtual environment here and here.


Labs (scientific, technological, language, etc.) provide hands-on application of course concepts in a controlled environment, including activities such as observing, measuring, testing, and experimenting.

Performance-based learning

Performance-based learning involves an individual or team-produced dramatic, artistic, or musical performance, exhibit or display that is prepared for an audience.

For support with industry/community-based or workplace-based projects, please see In the Community and In the Workplace.