IAEF*3500 Experimental Education

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The following description is for the course offering in Fall 2021 and is subject to change. It is provided for information only. The course outline distributed to the class at the beginning of the semester describes the course content and delivery, and defines the methods and criteria to be used in establishing the final grades for the course.

Student initiated experiential learning opportunities can be developed as a credit course in consultation with the course instructor. Students who find suitable employment in their chosen industry related to food, agriculture and environment over a summer semester can receive credit while completing the requirements for this course. This course is designed to run from May until November, with registration in the Fall semester. Students must confirm participation in this course by May 1st, prior to starting their summer employment. The course is designed to meet the needs of BSC(Agr.), BBRM and Agricultural Business students.

IAEF*3500 allows a student to gain credit for relevant work experience with the addition of course assignments. This means a unique set up for the format of this course. Students are expected to work full time for the majority of the summer semester prior to enrolling in the Fall semester. Students must confirm commitment to this course the last week in April prior to official enrollment.

Pre-Requisite(s): 5.00 credits; Restriction(s): Instructor consent required.


Teaching Assistant:

Credit Weight:


Course Level:

  • Undergraduate

Academic Department (or campus):

Department of Plant Agriculture



Semester Offering:

  • Fall

Class Schedule and Location:

Class will be all virtual for Fall 2021. The Fall introductory lecture and reflection lecture will be posted on CourseLink for you to watch in lieu of a September 13th class. Remaining lectures will be online only.


Virtual presentations will be on Teams. Calendar invites will be emailed to you; you will join by clicking on the link in your Teams calendar. 


Lectures are as scheduled on WebAdvisor (Mondays, 7pm-9:50pm). For Fall 2021, September 27th and October 4th are the two lecture dates for presentations. 

Learning outcomes:

By the end of this course, you should be able to:

1. demonstrate that you have gained significant practical experience in the industry in which you intend to be employed after graduation including an in-depth analysis of the company

2. analyze a self-selected aspect of your chosen industry and communicate the analysis in the form of a written assignment.

3. critically reflect on personal skill development through written and oral communication.

4. discuss challenges and successes with respect to personal goal setting using a poster as a visual aid.

Lecture Content:

  • The “first lecture” will be on CourseLink in April to ensure all students are informed of the course expectations at the start of the summer work experience.
  • Course material in the form of notes and online modules will be on Courselink.
  • The first scheduled in-class lecture will be an introduction to the next part of the course (expectations for the presentations and reflective writing).
  • Subsequent lecture times will be used for the presentations.
Labs & Seminars:

Course Assignments and Tests:

Participation Info Sheet * (5%)
Due: Wed, May 5th, 4:00 PM
Learning Outcome: 1
It is expected that you submit your Participation Information Sheet by May 5th, 2021 to confirm enrollment in the course. The Participation Information Sheet will be emailed to your @uoguelph.ca email account if you have confirmed enrollment with the instructor and submission will be via email to the instructor (as CourseLink may not be available at this time).
Goal Setting Assignment (10%)
Due: Wed, Jun 2nd, 4:00 PM
Learning Outcomes: 1, 3
This assignment allows you to set up personal goals to work on over the summer. A key part of this course is assessing how your own career skills fit with your employment experience. Having you do this before and after the period of work is an important part of the learning experience. Connecting your goal setting to your self reflection is critical; the two assignments are linked so make sure you keep your goal setting assignment until November.
Employer Research Assignment (20%)
Due: Wed, Aug 25th, 4:00 PM
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2
This assignment is to research the company you are working for and analyze their role in the agri-food industry.
Poster Presentation (25%)
Dates: Starting Week 4, Abstract Wed, Sept 22nd, 4:00 PM
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 4
We will be having several classes in the fall. During these classes students present their poster for evaluation and discussion with their classmates. Posters will be electronic due to the hybrid lectures. Your poster presentation is an evaluation of the skills you learned and the goals you tried to achieve while working. The first class will be dedicated to going over the requirements for these presentations.
Reflection Assignment (40%)
Due: Wed, Nov 10th, 4:00 PM
Learning Outcomes: 1, 3
This assignment allows you to reflect on your time as an employee and relate experiences to your goal setting and the modules on LinkedIn.
6.2 Notes regarding assessment (if required):
* The Participation Information Sheet is mandatory. They must be submitted even if they are worth 0 with late days. Failure to submit this assignment may result in a student being deregistered from the course.

Final examination:

There is no final examination for this course.

Course Resources:

There are no required or recommended textbooks, lab manuals, or field trips for this course.
3.1 Additional Resources
3.2 Additional Cost (Other)
Due to the virtual presentations, there is no requirement to print and pay for posters. 
3.3 Additional Course Information
This course is designed to run from May to early November, but students will register in the Fall semester. Confirmation of enrollment must occur in April before the work experience begins.

Course Policies:

Grading Policies:

Please note there is a -10% per day late penalty on all assignments. This includes your major project. All assignments are due by 4:00 pm EST. If you would like to ask for an extension, please contact me well before the due date with the grounds you feel should be taken into consideration. Working is not grounds for an extension. 

Course Policy on Group Work:

There is no group work in this course. 

Course Policy regarding use of electronic devices and recording of lectures:

Electronic recording of classes is expressly forbidden without consent of the instructor. When recordings are permitted they are solely for the use of the authorized student and may not be reproduced, or transmitted to others, without the express written consent of the instructor.

Other Course Information:

University Policies

Academic Consideration

When you find yourself unable to meet an in-course requirement because of illness or compassionate reasons, please advise the course instructor in writing, with your name, id#, and e-mail contact. See the academic calendar for information on regulations and procedures for Academic Consideration:

Academic Misconduct

The University of Guelph is committed to upholding the highest standards of academic integrity and it is the responsibility of all members of the University community, faculty, staff, and students  to be aware of what constitutes academic misconduct and to do as much as possible to prevent academic offences from occurring.

University of Guelph students have the responsibility of abiding by the University's policy on academic misconduct regardless of their location of study; faculty, staff and students have the responsibility of supporting an environment that discourages misconduct. Students need to remain aware that instructors have access to and the right to use electronic and other means of detection. Please note: Whether or not a student intended to commit academic misconduct is not relevant for a finding of guilt. Hurried or careless submission of assignments does not excuse students from responsibility for verifying the academic integrity of their work before submitting it. Students who are in any doubt as to whether an action on their part could be construed as an academic offence should consult with a faculty member or faculty advisor.

The Academic Misconduct Policy is detailed in the University Calenders:


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