We’ll spend the afternoon of Monday the 6th experiencing learning first hand by participating in Experiential Learning Activities- 1.5 or 3 hour opportunities to learn something new with a group of your conference peers and Activity leaders. Use this Google Sheet to sign-up for Activities(s) to fill your afternoon. Each Activity has a limited number of spots available, and signing up early is the best way to get a spot in your prefered Activity. We’ll also have sign-up sheets at the registration desk if you don’t select your Activity in advance.

Each Activity occurs in a unique location. Meet outside the Commons building at 1:00 and 2:30 (if applicable) for a volunteer to bring you to your Activity.

Intercultural Simulation Game

Alwyn Spies | UBC Okanagan
Claude Desmarais | UBC Okanagan

1:00-2:30 and 2:30-4:00

We will play a quick and easy, old-school, paper-based simulation game from the 80s that (supposedly) elicits typical human responses in an environment that (purportedly) mimics intercultural situations. Then we debrief the experience (à la experiential learning best practices). Finally, we will meta-debrief the debriefing- discussing the issues and ethics of using (justifiably long-forgotten?) teaching methods like simulation games in our courses, and, if we can get to it, a rousing debate on whether or not empathy training is even possible, or advisable, in a university setting in the precarious 21st century. Cynics welcome, but participation is mandatory!


Life Under the Microscope

Mark Button | UBC Okanagan

1:00-2:30 and 2:30-4:00

Using a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) participants will delve into the microscopic world to reveal complex forms and structures not visible to the naked eye. The elemental composition of various samples will also be examined using Energy Dispersive x-ray Spectroscopy (EDS). The findings of this ‘micro’ experiment will be used to demonstrate how microscopy and elemental analysis can be utilised to help answer complex scientific questions in the modern world.


Introduction to Native Plants in the Okanagan Valley

Terry McIntosh | UBC Beaty Biodiversity

1:00-2:30 and 2:30-4:00

Following an introduction, the ‘class’ will take a short walk across campus to an open ponderosa pine forest. Here, we will do a few exercises (which I do with my class each summer) that help the student ‘see’ the environment through the plants that live there. People will have to partner up and do another exercise that focuses more on the plants than the habitat. Hopefully, all the participants will learn to identify some of our native plants! I will also discuss my teaching philosophy and, at any time during the activity, we can enjoy group discussion and questions.

Special equipment: Practical shoes, rain gear if it rains, sun hat if it’s sunny


3D Printing and Design

Sabine Weyand | UBC Okanagan
Matthew Vis-Dunbar | UBC Okanagan


Makerspace UBCO is an interdisciplinary, peer-facilitated workspace designed to foster creative thinking through design and making, serving as a hub for innovation, cross-discipline collaboration and entrepreneurship. Gain hands-on training and confidence in the UBCO makerspace with this introduction to modelling and 3D printing. Learn basic principles of design as you create a model, and get first-hand experience with a 3D printer. Learn more about makerspace UBCO at makerspace.ok.ubc.ca

The activity will begin with a safety orientation. If you’re able, please bring your own laptop.


“Labs” vs “Experiential Learning” in the Sciences (What is that Soil in my Garden?)

Stuart MacKinnon | UBC Okanagan
Craig Nichol | UBC Okanagan
David Scott | UBC Okanagan


Participants will undertake both lab and field experiences similar to what students would do in a typical Earth and Environmental Science 100 or 200 level course. We will practice hand texturing of soil, describe soil profiles, analyze soil water holding capacity, and evaluate organic matter content. These are typical daily practices of a working soil scientist. Participants will then workshop whether typical “labs” in science courses may or may not exemplify experiential learning, and what particular characteristics of lab design may enhance experiential learning. For participants, the practical skills learned are intended to be applicable to everyday life (e.g., gardening).

Accessibility: This Activity will involve walking to and from an unpaved field site. It will not be a strenuous hike but will pass over vegetated open ground. Potential participants with mobility and/or accessibility concerns are encouraged to contact the Conference organizers prior to registering as access can be arranged to suit.


Campus Quest: Place-Based Learning in the Garden with Geolocation

Robert Campbell | UBC Okanagan
Jannik Eikenaar | UBC Okanagan


Participants will undertake a quest through the UBC Okanagan Learning Garden and Pond Trail. Along the way, at specific locations, they will respond to questions posed through an app on their smartphone. The app augments and supports their understanding of their real-world excursion.

Special equipment: Practical shoes and a smartphone Android or IOS

Accessibility: We will be gathering the Learning Garden- the paths are accessible for those with mobility aids.

Experiencing a Multiple Patient Hospital Simulation with Nursing Students

Colleen duManoir | UBC Okanagan


Come and walk alongside our senior nursing students as they receive a report from the nightshift nurse, prioritize care, and care for 4 “patients” – high fidelity simulation mannequins –  on a medical unit. We begin with a pre-briefing session including describing the pedagogical approach, learning outcomes. Attendees will receive a copy of the simulation guideline and scholarly references. The simulation ends with a 30 minute debrief.