Experiential Learning Activities at DU
Davenport's experiential learning activities help provide students with the experience they need to sharpen skills learned in the classroom and prepare for the work environment. Davenport University recognizes four major types of academic service learning:
- Course-Embedded Experiential Projects
- Academic Service Learning
- Traditional Internships, Practicums, and Clinical Experiences
- Study Abroad Programs
These opportunities benefit both the student and the community by encouraging interaction student-community interaction.
Davenport University implements experiential learning projects throughout its many programs. These projects are designed to take the skills learned in class beyond the classroom; rather than relying only on standard testing and lectures, these projects require students to gain experience in real situations. Community businesses also have the opportunity to benefit from they provide access to students as a community resource.
Some examples of the way course embedded projects are implemented at DU include field trips, community business/industry experts, job shadowing, externships, research and consulting projects for business and industry, and attending community events and speeches.
Some specific examples include SOC 201 (Diversity in Society), where students take field trips to various Detroit cultural and religious centers. HNRS 310-306 (Honors Accountancy Projects) students participate in valuable job shadow experiences with grand Rapids’ Accounting firms, and MKTG 441(Strategic Marketing) students aid in production of a strategic marketing plan for a for-profit publishing company.
Davenport University uses the Bringle and Hatcher definition of academic service learning: "a course-based, credit-bearing educational experience in which students participate in an organized service activity that meets identified community needs, and reflect on the service activity in such a way as to gain further understanding of course content, a broader appreciation of the discipline, and an enhanced sense of personal values and civic responsibility." These projects are usually associated with a serving the community through non-profit organizations.
Examples in different DU courses include the following:
BITS 303 (Web Authoring Applications) Students have designed web sites for the first public library in Rwanda, the Novi Chamber of Commerce online member directory, and a child day development center.
BUSN 495 (Business Planning Capstone)Students participated in the production of a business plan for the Hope Network Micro Enterprise program.
ENG 311 (Professional Writing) Students have aided in the production of newsletters, brochures, and reports for John Ball Zoo.
ACCT 301-306 (Honors Accountancy Projects) Students participate in the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, where community volunteers offer free tax assistance to qualifying low- to moderate income taxpayers.
Davenport University offers traditional options of internships, practicums, and clinical experiences. These are especially relevant in the Health, Technology, and Business fields. Davenport courses for these experiences are labeled 290 and 490. Davenport University also offers Allied Health practicums and Nursing clinical courses.
Davenport University promotes global competency, a set of skills, knowledge, and attitudes gained through study abroad programs. Davenport offers short-term programs up to six credits, including options in London, China, Germany, and Kenya. Semester long and whole year programs are also available at universities in the Netherlands, Spain, China, France, and Italy.