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Experiential Learning

In addition to learning in traditional, text-based classes that utilize seminar or lecture formats, Vanderbilt students may choose from several academic-enhancement programs that are designed to to intensify learning through activities that require engaged, experience-based participation. Some of these programs (like Study Abroad, Service Learning, and P.O.D.S.) are formalized within AXLE. Others are complementary activites that seek to deepen connections between living and learning within the undergraduate community.

Programs include:

  • Study Abroad
  • Service Learning
  • P.O.D.S
    Partnerships of Discourse and Service (PODS) program groups together several First Year Writing Seminars under the common theme of Global Perspectives and allows for shared programming, discussion and service opportunities among participants.
  • Vanderbilt Visions
    Vanderbilt Visions is a first-year university core program that brings together faculty, VUcept student peer mentors, professional educational staff and the members of the Class of 2011 in a common task. Together, we want to make the leap from high school to the challenging world of an internationally distinguished research university.
  • The Martha Rivers Ingram Commons at Vanderbilt
  • Mayfield Living and Learning Experience
    The Mayfield Living/Learning Lodges are assigned to groups of 10 students who live together in order to pursue a self-directed, yearlong program of theme-based educational activities, including, but not limited to, community service projects. Each lodge works with one or more faculty advisers. Recent topics include: "Learning through the Eyes of an American Soldier," "Speaking in a Silent World," "Body Image: In the Eye of the Beholder," World Religions-Interfaith Lodge, and Cultural Enrichment Through Performing Arts for Kids.
  • McTyeire International House
    McTyeire International House promotes the use of foreign languages and the awareness of different cultures. McTyeire offers programs to students seeking to improve their fluency in French, German, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, Italian, or Russian. An English-language program is offered to students seeking to learn more about international topics. Resident students are required to speak their target languages or discuss international topics at specific activities, including weekly study breaks and international dinners served Monday through Thursday in McTyeire's own dining room. McTyeire's kitchen specializes in international cuisine from around the world. Faculty members in the foreign languages are affiliated with McTyeire, and regularly dine with students.
  • The McGill Project
    In 1972, the Office of Housing and Residential Education and the Department of Philosophy undertook the creatino of a unique living and learning environment in McGill Hall. They were later joined by the Department of Fine Arts. As a result, the McGill Project became a living-learning project for Philosophy and Fine Arts. The active involvement of the Department of Philosophy, and the commitment on the part of McGill residents to their community have contributed to a long history of diverse social and educational activities.