What is Via Experientia

We are an informal network of organisations and experts from different countries of Europe, who are concerned to improve experiential learning theory and practice for more than ten years. We work in different sectors, both formal and non-formal. We have wide experience in working with different groups of adult learners. Working together in various constellations has given us a rich history of shared training and learning journeys. This encourages us to continue our discoveries and share our findings in adult education by increasing adult educators’ access to professional training courses on experiential education methodology. The partnership includes Outward Bound, Belgium, Kitokie projektai, Lithuania; Askorun ehf, Iceland; Kamaleonte, Italy; Vilnius Cooperative College, Lithuania, the UNIQUE network.

The objectives of our courses:

  • To empower participants to facilitate individual and group learning processes based on experiential learning principles.
  • To train participants in basic facilitation skills, such as, reflecting, active listening, mirroring, giving and receiving feedback, framing an activity.
  • We are concentrating specifically on enabling participants to:
    • Use outdoor activities, bearing in mind that these are NOT courses for learning purely technical skills!
    • Analyse which stage the group and individuals have reached in their process;
    • Create a physically and emotionally safe learning environment even when dealing with tensions and conflicts in a group ;
    • Live with uncertainty and working chaos.
  • To familiarise the participants with experiential learning theory, history and current developments, plus exploring sources for further information and learning.
  • To encourage participants to take the conscious position of learners in the process.
  • To encourage creativity and the appropriate use of humour and fun.
  • To use the learning potential of diversity in multicultural groups.
  • To encourage participants to have their own perspective on the philosophical and theoretical backgrounds of experiential learning and to have a critical view on its application.
  • To contribute to the development of a professional profile for experiential learning facilitators in Europe.
  • To document the training and provide educational materials useful also for others to use.

“I never had the feeling that the trainers were pushing me towards their meaning, but just to find my meaning. I saw also that trainers were learning for themselves.”

– past participant

International Academy of Experiential Education „Via Experientia“ was created during Grundtvig project 142204-2008-LLP-LT-GRUNDTVIG-GMP, which was run from November 2008 till October 2010. You can find a short film about the project here (best quality – 400Mb) and the public part of the project report here.

The project is over but „Via Experientia“ CONTINUES and GROWS!