Experiential Learning

Example Experiential Education Programs & Organizations

James Neill
Last updated:
26 Oct 2006

This is a selected list of programs and organizations which have websites which help to illustrate the rich range of unique locations and program style of experiential education programs.  The list has the ambition of being 'representative' but currently reflects an emphasis on experiential programs which utilize natural locations and adventure-based activities.

  • Adventure Travel & Ecotourism - Different kinds of organized travel programs have emerged and become more popular in recent decades, including concepts such as Volunteer Tourism (google search).
  • Discovery Program, Prospect Heights Middle School - Inspired by an Outward Bound course, Andy Mink, a teacher, developed an experiential and outdoor learning program for his middle school.  Also read this article about how Andy's Outward Bound course inspired him.
  • Chewonki Foundation - A well-known outdoor/environmental education program in Maine, USA.  Aims to foster an appreciation for the natural world, and for working in community with others via camps, teacher workshops, environmental education, wilderness expeditions, etc.
  • Dynamy’s Internship Year - Offers an experiential “gap year” program for both high school graduates and college students in the USA.  Combines urban residential living, one-on-one mentoring/advising, optional academic credit, service-learning, and wilderness experience with Outward Bound and the Boojum Institute.
  • Expeditionary Learning Outward Bound - experiential education program in schools, based on Outward Bound philosophy.
  • Outdoor Adventure Education & Czech Culture - a 7-day experiential course for foreign university students to explore Czech culture through outdoor education and adventure.
  • Outward Bound Czech - A relatively new Outward Bound program which is unique in its  emphasis on more creative, dramatic, and socially challenging style of traditional, physically-tough, Outward Bound wilderness expedition style programs.  Andy Martin did a PhD thesis recently on Czech OB programs (more info about this study).
  • Play for Peace - Brings groups of children and youth from conflicting cultures together to experience joy, laughter and break down barriers.  Also see Peace & Experiential Education.
  • Project Adventure - Offers extensive, well-known curriculum and training in the use of experiential group games and activities for learning, development and therapy.
  • REAL School - Alternative education for at-risk, adolescents, Maine, USA.  Recently headed by Ray Handley, a well-known alternative teacher and adventure therapist from Australia
  • Sail Training Programs - Engaging students with living and travel via sea has and will continue to offer a novel medium for experiential education.
  • Women's Wilderness Institute - Focuses on making outdoor adventures accessible and palatable to girls and women who may otherwise fear venturing into what is commonly perceived as a masculine domain.  Also see Gender and Outdoor Education.