Experiential Learning

Experiential learning offers students exposure to a world of hands-on opportunities that enrich academic life and help them reach professional and personal goals. In NSU University School’s Upper School, that exposure may take place in a course, club, fellowship, internship, innovation lab, or through the senior Shark Capstone Experience.

Experiential Courses:


Although all of NSU University School courses have a component of experiential learning, some of our courses are entirely based on hands-on learning. Students who take AT Forensic Science are partnered with the NSU College of Criminal Justice. Professors, detectives, attorneys and forensic scientists visit the classroom and contribute to student success. Indoor and outdoor crime scenes are set up. Evidence is collected and processed utilizing actual technology and procedures. In AT Microbiology, students work with live bacterial cultures. In World Language Fellows and Writing Fellows, students plan lessons, peer tutor students of all levels, research the teaching of rhetoric, and present their finding at national conferences. In Entrepreneurial Economics, teams of students assume the role of entrepreneurs tasked with devising a proprietary, practical invention, problem solving to develop a business plan, determining distribution methods, marketing, budgeting, and pitching their invention to real business owners. Students in these experiential learning classes apply skills in complex and ambiguous situations, develop lifelong learning habits, and foster career readiness.



NSU University School Fellowships are unique, immersion experiences offered to a select number of University School students who have demonstrated an interest and aptitude in a particular topic. Fellowship students will have the opportunity to interact with NSU professionals and explore career choices in a specific field. These fellows will be asked to form unique research questions of their own, journal about each field rotation, and present to a panel of field professionals in May.



internship uschoolNSU University School students who have a demonstrated skill and interest in a particular area will have the opportunity to dive into projects and learning situations that enhance their academic experience beyond our campus. This interdisciplinary program allows students to interface with various experiential activities and professional field experts in order to explore and research areas of focus and concentration through immersion in discrete aspects of a general field.


Innovation Lab:


In the Upper School Innovation Lab, students have time to participate in hands-on research using legos, Ardruino boards, modeling, tinkering, robotics, and many other inquiry-based learning projects. Students  engage in an abundance of innovative and engaging hands-on learning activities related to a given theme. These labs provide the student body an environment to play, research, create, and reflect. Students in innovation labs may spend a week, month, or year working on an independent project.

Shark Capstone Experience:

From April 26 to May 17, seniors will have the option to deeply explore an interest in one of four areas: academic, career, community service, or personal. As a culminating event, seniors will speak to an audience of parents, teachers, and administration sharing evidence of the impact this project had on their lives.