Melding classroom instruction with real-world problem-solving

TitleMelding classroom instruction with real-world problem-solving
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1983
AuthorsGannon JEdward, Fairchild GWinfield
JournalJournal of Experiential Education

Excellent opportunities exist for the instruction of environmental biology at field stations across the country. Field stations offer the potential for experiential learning in a diversity of natural environments. Students normally enroll in two courses offered intensively over a short time period ranging from five to ten weeks. The learning experience, when condensed into such a short time frame, can become a disjunct helter-skelter dash through field exercises and laboratory methods without the proper development of an overall theme and sense of direction. However, with extra attention given to course planning and time budgeting, a fusion of basic and applied concepts can be achieved. In our experience, the key to the integration process is directing the student's acquired knowledge and techniques toward solving a real environmental management problem. Our objective was to integrate a sound academic foundation with experience in resource management problem-solving, thereby better preparing students to act responsibly and effectively in resolution of environmental problems in their own communties, irrespective of their future as aquatic science professionals or as lay citizens.