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Center for Integrative and Experiential Learning

Integrative Learning

At USC, students’ educational experience is enriched by engagement within and beyond the classroom.  Students’ ability to connect these experiences is the heart of a truly meaningful education.  How does an experience enrich or bring into question what seemed apparent in another?  Which experiences are most relevant?  How does learning across experiences inform future decisions?  

Integrative learning at USC is about making connections across within and beyond the classroom experiences.  It includes student engagement in community service, research, peer leadership, internships, and study abroad, but it is more than just having the experience.  It is about learning from the experience and connecting learning to academic study.  The final step is applying learning to solve problems and make decisions . . . applying learning to lead.


The USC Connect QEP Learning Outcomes

The four learning outcomes of the USC Connect QEP were created in consideration of the AAC&U rubric on integrative learning. Consider incorporating one or more of the learning outcomes into your syllabus or program goals. 

Students will

  • Provide examples of beyond the classroom experiences in which they have engaged and describe how one or more beyond the classroom experiences has contributed to their learning.
  • Articulate examples of beyond the classroom experiences that illuminate concepts/theories/frameworks presented in their coursework including a clear description of elements of the beyond the classroom experience that are consistent with or contradictory to the identified concept.
  • Thoughtfully connect examples, facts, and/or theories from more than one experience, field of study, and/or perspective such as describing the similarities and differences across experiences, fields of study, or perspectives.
  • Pose solutions to problems (i.e., make recommendations) that incorporate learning from both beyond the classroom and within the classroom experiences, articulate how their decisions are supported by what they have learned through their experiences and content preparation, and implement those solutions (if appropriate). 


The CIEL Integrative Learning Rubric for Graduation with Leadership Distinction (GLD) ePortfolios [pdf]

The GLD e-portfolio rubric is based on the USC Connect QEP learning outcomes and has been refined over time.  Reviewers are trained in applying the rubric and an annual assessment is conducted to monitor reliability.

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