Engaged Learning is a graduation requirement for all undergraduate students and is introduced to students through Admission sessions, the Student Navigation Office (SNO), and their Academic advisors. Academic advisors are responsible for monitoring a student’s progress in completing their Engaged Learning graduation requirement and discussing it with the student during their advising session. DegreeWorks records a student’s progress towards graduation for all academic requirements and includes a section that records their Engaged Learning points.
- All first-year freshmen/transfer students should be encouraged to complete the New Student Engagement Experience.
- All students should be encouraged to plan early for how they intend to earn points to meet their requirements. Students will meet the requirement through a combination of coursework, experiences, service opportunities and by completing an Enhanced Career Experience.
As students approach their senior year and graduation, it is especially important to review the DegreeWorks EL section with them and make them aware of their progress towards meeting the requirement. They must meet the requirement by the end of their final semester, before Commencement. If a student needs additional time to earn points, they should discuss this with their dean and their Academic Coordinator as soon as possible.
An Overview of the Engaged Learning Graduation Requirement
All undergraduate students must earn Engaged Learning points. There are two parts to the requirement:
|Points Requirement||Category Requirement|
|Freshmen status students including transfer students need to earn six (6) points.||Freshmen status students including transfer students with fewer than 31 credits need to earn points in at least two different Engaged Learning categories.|
|Transfer students with 31 or more accepted credits (sophomore, junior or senior status) need only three (3) points.||Transfer students with 31 or more accepted credits (sophomore, junior or senior status) need to earn points in one category, however, they may divide the points they earn across multiple categories if desired.|
The six categories of Engaged Learning are:
- Study Abroad and Cultural Exploration (SACE)
- Guided Research and Scholarship (GRS)
- Internship, Co-Op, and Fieldwork (ICF)
- Leadership and Mentoring (LM)
- Civic and Community Engagement (CCE)
- Arts, Media and Creativity (AMC)
For all students, points may be divided among the categories in any arrangement. As long as the student earns the required number of points in the required number of categories they will satisfy their requirement. For example, students with a six (6) point requirement may divide their earned points between the categories by earning:
- 1 point in one category and 5 points in a second category
- 2 points in one category and 4 points in a second category
- 3 points in one category and 3 points in a second category
Transfer students with 31+ accepted credits who hold sophomore, junior or senior status are required to earn three (3) points which may be earned in one category, or spread out over two or more categories:
- 1 point in one category and 2 points in a second category
- 3 points in one category
In all cases, students have a minimum point requirement but there isn’t a maximum number of Engaged Learning points they can earn. The more they earn, the more robust, revealing and interesting their EL transcript will be.
How do Students Earn Engaged Learning Points?
There are six ways students can earn Engaged Learning points:
- Complete an approved Engaged Learning Course
- Course credits equate to EL points, with a maximum of three (3) points awarded for any one course. Courses completed at other universities cannot be used to earn points. At the end of each semester after grades are submitted and posted, Engaged Learning points get posted to DegreeWorks and on the Engaged Learning transcript. It may take up to one week after the end of the semester for the points to be posted.
- Accrue hours in an Engaged Learning Experience
- Experience participation hours may be performed at any time, during any semester or break, while a student is active at Rider. Experience hours performed while not an active student do not count. If needed, hours may be accumulated across semesters or academic years until the hours total 20 or more. 20 is the minimum number of hours needed to earn one EL point.
- With 20+ hours accrued, students must complete the correct experience form in BroncNation. The student’s submission will be reviewed by a designated approver. The Engaged Learning Coordinator periodically sends the Registrar a report of points earned during each semester. Points for experiences are awarded based upon the hours a student has invested, as follows:
- 20 – 49 hours = 1 point; 50 – 99 hours = 2 points; 100+ hours = 3 points
- While students may earn one point after completing 20 hours in an experience, a second point is not able to be earned for the same experience in the same semester until the student’s total hours reach 50; then again when they reach 100. When fewer than 50 or 100 hours are submitted at a time, an experience form must be completed in BroncNation for each point.
- Division I Athletic Team Membership Earns Engaged Learning Point
- Student athletes will automatically receive three (3) points in the category LM: Leadership and Mentoring each semester after the Director of Athletics submits the official NCAA roster to the Registrar. Athletes do not need to do anything else in order to earn these points. However, unless they are a transfer student with sophomore, junior or senior status, freshman status student athletes must still earn at least one point in any category other than LM to complete the two-category requirement.
- All student athletes including transfer student athletes are required to complete an experience in BroncNation called LM: NCAA Athlete Junior/Senior Capstone. This should be completed in their Junior or Senior year. They may speak with Kori Washington ([email protected]) in Athletics about this requirement.
- Student athletes should be encouraged to earn one point for the New Student Engagement Experience during their first year. Doing so will provide them with points in the CCE category and the LM category, completing the two-category graduation requirement. See below for details on the New Student Engagement Experience.
- Participate in Community Service
- Review the Community Service webpage for guidelines about what constitutes volunteer service at Rider.
- Students may volunteer with any organization that fits the guidelines of volunteer service, either on campus or off campus, as long as they are supervised and the supervisor’s contact information can be provided.
- No service performed before becoming a Rider student may earn points.
- Students may spend time volunteering with one or more organizations, logging their service hours in BroncNation as they complete them or as one entry when they reach at least 20 hours of service.
- Service hours may be accumulated over several semesters or academic years until they total 20 or more. Service hours not submitted or approved in BroncNation cannot be used to earn points.
- When service hours in Bronc Nation total 20 or more, students must attend a reflection session hosted by the Office of Service and Civic Engagement before they will earn the points. Service hours in BroncNation are approved by the Office of Service and Civic Engagement.
- Reflection sessions are listed on the Events page in BroncNation each semester. Students must register in BroncNation for the session they want to attend. Attendance at no more than 3 reflections sessions will be required but students are encouraged to continue to perform community service.
- Service Learning trips are not submitted as community service but are submitted as an experience as described above. Students must complete the experience form named CCE: Service Trip Coordinator or Participant, found in BroncNation.
- Review the Community Service webpage for guidelines about what constitutes volunteer service at Rider.
- Complete the New Student Engagement Experience
- Created for freshmen and first-year transfer students to complete during their first full year at Rider, the NSEE provides an easy way for new students to earn one point while becoming familiar with Rider. No matter which semester is their first (Fall, Spring, or Summer) new students have one full year to earn this experience point. To assist students in keeping track of details for the events they have attended, an Event Tracking Form is available for download on the Engaged Learning website.
- To earn one (1) point in the Civic and Community Engagement category, students must attend six (6) Rider events that are then placed into the themes listed below, with a maximum of two (2) events in any one theme:
- Sporting Event/Intramurals
- Lecture/Workshop/Teach-In/Shared Read
- Art Performance
- Campus Tradition Event
- Diversity Event
- Health, Wellness & Spirituality Event
- All Rider events may be used to earn this point, however, events attended must take place during the student’s first year.
- Students should list the six events as one experience in BroncNation using the form CCE: New Student Engagement Experience.
- The experience form must be submitted in BroncNation before the end of the student’s first year. The submission will be reviewed by the Student Navigation Office (SNO) coach or TRIO, EOP or MSP advisor assigned to the student.
- Participate in an Enriched Career Experience (ECE)
- The Office of Career Services has partnered with Engaged Learning to create the ECE. All students are strongly encouraged to contact their college/school Career Coach during their junior or senior year to discuss how an ECE will benefit and enhance their academic program and employment goals and to help place them in the best experiential location for their situation.
- An ECE is a 100+ hour, intentional, high-impact, experiential opportunity that can be completed during a semester or over the summer.
- An ECE can be an internship, co-op, student teaching, fieldwork, guided research, scholarship, a career focused opportunity in the arts/media, distinct creative endeavors (such as working on a performance), an on-campus student employment internship, shadowing experience or a combination of micro-internships.
- ECE opportunities will earn 3 EL points that count toward the Engaged Learning requirement in one of the following categories:
- Internships, Co-Ops, Student Teaching, or Fieldwork;
- Guided Research and Scholarship;
- Arts, Media and Creativity
How to Request that a New Course or Experience be Approved by the Engaged Learning Committee to Earn Points
Faculty and staff may complete a form in Bronc Nation requesting that a course or experience be approved to earn points. The Engaged Learning Committee meets monthly during Fall and Spring to review requests. You will be notified through BroncNation when your submission has been reviewed.
- Log in to BroncNation. Under the Grid icon select Explore. Select the Forms tab. Open the Engaged Learning Opportunities form. Be sure to hit Submit when you have finished.
Approving Co-curricular Engaged Learning Experiences in BroncNation
You will be notified by the Engaged Learning Coordinator when there is a student experience form in BroncNation that needs your review and approval. You may also look in BroncNation at any time for your students’ experiences that you need to review, however, do not review any submissions that are not yours. Instructions on how to log in to BroncNation are on the website.
When reviewing a student submission, pay particular attention to the following:
- Students must enter the hours they spent in an experience. As the experience reviewer, you should be able to verify that they spent the number of hours performing the experience that they enter in the form. If a student entered more hours than you can verify, please deny the experience and advise the student to resubmit the form with the corrected number of hours.
- The most important aspect of a student’s experience is the outcome they realize after completing it. Each experience form requires a 250+ word written reflection which is the focal point of your review before approval.
Reviewing Engaged Learning Program Written Reflections
An important aspect of the Engaged Learning Program is to ensure that students who have completed an experience have adequately reflected upon and learned from what they have done. To provide uniformity in the reflection review process for all Engaged Learning experiences, please review the following information before approving reflections.
The points to consider when reviewing reflections for approval are:
- The reflection must contain at least 250 words.
- The reflection must respond sufficiently to all three key reflection points below:
- Using examples from their experience, does the student illustrate what they’ve learned about themselves, others, and/or the organization?
- Does the student write about the challenges and/or successes they had?
- How did the experience relate to a course(s) taken at Rider?
- Does the student provide ideas on how they will apply what they experienced in their personal, academic, and/or professional life?
If the student adequately touches upon all of these key points you may approve the experience.
If a student has not discussed all of these points, you are asked to deny approval of the experience in BroncNation. In the denial form you should provide the student with guidance on what to include/improve upon. Encourage them to make the noted improvements and resubmit their experience for another review.
Things to Know about the Reflection Rubric
The Rubric Is Based off of The “What? So What? Now What?” Reflection Model
We are asking students to describe what they learned, what it means to their development, and how they will apply what they earned to other areas of their lives and in the future.
Quality Is More Important Than Quantity
While we do ask for at least 250 words, ultimately, the reflection should show evidence of critical thinking and the attainment of new knowledge and insights about oneself and/or others. If a reflection simply recounts what a student did, it does not meet the key points above and it should be denied, and you should provide suggestions on how to improve it. Students should always be encouraged to resubmit their experience for another review until it can be approved.
Note: The Denial Comment Box has a Limit of Around 300 Characters
If your guidance to the student exceeds this limit, it is suggested that you provide a basic idea of the rationale for denying their reflection in the BroncNation form and instruct them to check their Rider e-mail for a more detailed follow up. You can then e-mail them a more descriptive explanation of how to improve upon their reflection.
A reflection guide with example reflections is provided on the Engaged Learning website.