Experiential Learning vs Traditional Learning

Experiential Learning vs Traditional Learning

Experiential Learning vs Traditional Learning: Before getting into the traditional learning vs experiential learning debate, we need to understand education and its approach.

The Indian education system had Gurukul practice, after which it underwent many changes. Gurukul to online education has been a long journey education. Many thinkers have given their observations and opinions on the importance of education.

In the current traditional education system, as the name implies, learning or teaching is done using textbooks, teachers, exams, classes, and notes. A traditional approach to education with teachers, schools, and blackboards automatically comes to mind.

Often, educational institutions move on to the promise of their tradition of education and results and a secure future. Various methods are adopted to attract students to their institutions.

On the other hand, students seeking experiential and experiential learning have to gain knowledge through their own experience and curiosity. This medium has its own teacher. Here everyone’s definition of experience rooms and curiosities may be different.

Montessori vs. Traditional  School

To understand the difference between the two education systems, let’s consider the traditional education system. Let’s take a small and simple example of cooking in our life. No recipe can be made by reading a book.

After reading the book, what preparation should be done to cook or make food? One can get knowledge of what material will be required.

To become an excellent cook, you have to cook every day, you have to learn every day, and you have to experiment every day. Only then can taste, style, and quality be improved through experience. This is the basic difference between traditional learning and experiential learning.



The purpose of writing and understanding this article is also to examine traditional writing and experiential therapy to help clarify the differences between the two approaches.

An observation made by the famous psychologist Hermann Ebbinghaus states that a student will study for a month and at the end of thirty days he will be found to have absorbed only 2 to 3 percent of the information learned and taught.

Perhaps this is why a student will memorize definitions or formulas for science, math, or any other exam and forget them completely by the time the exam is over. Or partially remembered, but more likely to forget it all.

Because in the current mainstream education system or using traditional teaching methods, instead of producing students who are good at learning, the aim is to get the highest marks only by doing well. Robots are being built to beat classes, do homework and get marks.

A student who diverts his studies out of fear of punishment from school or parents and greed for marks will be considered uneducated, not well-educated. Because he learned the formula of study but could not widen the circle of experience in life.

Therefore, the study of many experts shows that it is essential to solving this flawed education system. For this, the government, society, and parents need to come forward. Traditional education will create a generation that gets marks but will not be able to act as smart, intelligent, and responsible citizens in society.



Although the term education is commonly associated with the process of learning and teaching, it needs to be defined and understood in terms of its basic process and spirit of education.

The process of learning never ends; It continues continuously. Primary and secondary education is pursued through bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate degrees, and can be followed in many mediums and in many disciplines.

However, students are given the freedom to study what they want and choose the path to pave the way for their future and career choices. After making this choice, it is essential to know the basic theory of the subjects and to achieve this it is necessary to use some aspects of traditional teaching methods.

In this article, education is defined as education in primary and secondary school only. Because it is a kind of gateway to the world of education while getting traditional education.

Then, after entering this Mahadwara, the outside world along with traditional education can be taken through experience and self-experience.
Benefits of experiential learning

Experiential learning should look at three major problems plaguing the prevailing education system. They are efficiency, motivation, and practicality. If we understand these three important issues, there will be no difficulty in understanding the obstacles in education and the education system to a large extent.



Current village government schools to grand educational institutions, despite the ever-advancing technology to assist teachers, cannot teach students efficiently. Students may not be able to understand what is taught.

Students are overwhelmed with eight hours of study at school and an insurmountable burden of homework. In this highly competitive society, parents, and students are sacrificing even their little free time for extra tutoring. Extra effort is also expected from students who want to appear for competitive exams.

A student goes through endless difficulties, a student is under pressure from parents, school, society, and education to perform at their best. Merit alone does not get admission without coursework. It is evaluated based on the academic year marks.

Under the pressure of this marks-based education, students spend too much time and effort, instead of learning something new, students only know the technique of reciting, getting marks, and moving on.

Many studies and articles on topics such as how the brain learns have addressed this topic. Practicing a skill strengthens the neural network in the brain. Hands-on activities require students to apply problem-solving methods and make independent decisions.

Through these processes, there is a tremendous increase in student engagement, which accelerates learning and improves retention and acquisition of knowledge. Repetitive learning fails to achieve such success.

A high focus on collaboration not only benefits students by increasing their participation, but students’ immediate participation in problem-solving activities also increases their level of ownership.

Another very beneficial aspect of experiential learning is that with each new experience and continuous testing, you can improve with a mistake-and-learn strategy. Hands-on tasks help students discover approaches that work better for them than others.

By this means outdated or inappropriate methods are discarded, but the act of trying at the beginning becomes a valuable part of the learning process. Students learn to remember and take advantage of mistakes without fearing them.

This instills a kind of confidence in the students. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes and learn. Motivated to experiment and learn. Because behind this there is self-learning and self-motivation.



As discussed earlier, fear of punishment and hunger for marks are the main motivators for students. As schools evaluate each student using traditional education methods and assign a numerical value to a child’s hard work, students’ motivation to try begins to wane.

The desire to score limits the desire to learn. Willingness to learn and do something new decreases. Hence, many instances show that traditional education, though it seems to be successful in getting marks, fails to fulfill its real purpose.

Students find the supplementary school materials provided along with lectures and textbooks useless. If they feel that the qualities and knowledge they have learned will not be useful anywhere in the real world, then they become apathetic towards education.

Experiential learning takes data and concepts and applies them to real tasks, leading to tangible results. Student interaction with information makes learning material concrete. Experiential learning enables students to find effective solutions to a given problem. It also acts as a freedom motivator.

By incorporating concrete experiences into the learning and reflecting on the results, students are covering more areas of their experience and making personal connections to the material.

When students see tangible results of their hard work, they experience greater satisfaction, which further increases their enthusiasm for learning. They are motivated to learn new things. They start thinking about new ideas and learning.



Many times the theoretical knowledge applied to the students proves to be irrelevant to their future. Furthermore, low retention rates in traditional teaching methods result in less real-world application of the taught content. Thus students learn meaningless names and equations and never use them.

Because of this, a student who is successful at the school level does not succeed in the professional or practical world. Many students make extreme decisions due to this pressure even if they fail a little. They can’t bear the least bit of resentment or disappointment.

Experiential learning projects offer significantly more career opportunities. Through these activities, students can explore and develop their skills, interests, and passions. Experiential learning activities are also communal, requiring students to work in groups.

Through these team projects, students learn essential social cooperation skills. Therefore, students who undergo experiential education can expect a comparatively easier future than students who undergo traditional education.

The biggest reason behind this is that the burden of parents’ excessive expectations is not on the shoulders of the students. Students experience the freedom to choose life and career permanently.


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One can criticize experiential learning methods by claiming that they are impractical in implementation. Experiential learning can be written off as unrealistic and impractical. However, such an assessment would be highly inaccurate.

Numerous educational institutions have not only successfully implemented experiential learning but have also produced excellent students using it.

Among the many institutes, some institutes are trying to make students by combining traditional and experiential education. In this one can mention many organizations started by the initiative of various religious organizations.

These institutions are based on the ideals of religious and philosophical figures; Experiential learning is yet to be developed in modern education systems. One must note that the institutions mentioned above are not just schools that offer minimal real-world experience; They are renowned institutes that have completely dispelled traditional education methods.



There is an urgent need to shift our education system towards experiential learning. The problems faced by traditional education systems are clearly explained. This article describes the undeniable benefits of experiential learning and refutes the common but flawed notion of its unreality.

Education is a constantly changing process and society must realize that it is imperative to shift towards experiential learning. Traditional, non-traditional and clearly ineffective education systems cannot be allowed to hinder the development of humanity.

Although education is necessary, it should be useful for survival. If students get marks and do not acquire anything at the practical level, it will be misleading to society in the name of education and very dangerous for the students. (All Pic: Google)


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