Experiential Learning at the BISC extends your learning experience outside the classroom and beyond traditional learning. Experiential learning opportunities (ELOs) focus on a practical approach to the discipline of study. You are encouraged to process your experiences in the field via guided reflection and critical thinking, supported by your instructor, who will help you foster your own active learning and acquisition of transferable skills.
Course-specific Experiential Learning Opportunities
You will participate in course-specific ELOs, usually two each term per subject. ELOs take place on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays throughout the term.
Some ELOs take place on site, taking advantage of the Castle's extensive grounds and facilities. These ELOs also include guests speakers and skills seminars. ELOs beyond the Castle include visits to a variety of sites of interest such as world-famous museums, unique archives, public debates and performances, festivals, and historic sites.
Around the UK or on the continent, the midterm trips are an outstanding, extended opportunity for you to explore global political, cultural and historical sites of interest. You will combine course-related analysis with cultural activities. These trips offer experiential learning opportunities that highlight the BISC’s commitment to delivering a range of academic opportunities that will allow you to explore numerous paths for potential future study. On previous trips, students have had the opportunity to explore such cities as Edinburgh, Liverpool,and Paris.
All students participate in these trips, irrespective of course selection and program.
Fall: a five-day midterm trip to Edinburgh and Liverpool for First Year students, and Edinburgh for Upper Year students. You will visit sites such as Edinburgh Castle and the Scottish Parliament.
Winter: for First Year students, a five-day midterm trip to Paris. You will visit sites such as the Louvre and the Musée d’Orsay. There is also often a chance to go on a River Seine boat cruise, organised by Student Services. For Upper Year students, the midterm trip visits Berlin for five days.
The main objective of the midterm trips is to introduce you, irrespective of your program and courses, to British and European political, economic and cultural issues, and their links with North America and the world.
Coaches are used for transportation for these trips. The Upper Year midterm trip flies to Berlin.
You will have the opportunity to see sites relating to your courses as well as time to explore on your own. The degree of time will vary according to the requests of the instructors and the courses in which you are enrolled.
Summer: midterm trips vary by program. For the Summer School, you will spend a long weekend in Europe, usually Paris. International Business Law and Public International Law students take part in a week-long field trip to key international institutions in cities such as The Hague, Brussels, Paris and Geneva. Global Health students also have an extended stay in Europe, usually in Geneva. Finally, Archaeology students have extended visits to UK sites of archaeological interest such as Bath, Stonehenge and Sutton Hoo.
On the midterm trips and overnight field trips, travel costs, accommodation (bed and breakfast) and entrance fees for course-related field studies are covered. All other expenses (including lunch and dinner, and entrance fees to non-course-related sites and events) are your responsibility.
Cultural Studies Trips
There is also at least one cultural studies trip per term that is open to all students at the Castle. Past cultural studies trips have included:
- Day-trip to Canterbury, which includes a visit to Canterbury Cathedral
- Day-trip to Bruges
- Day-trip to Cambridge, including a walking tour
- Day trip to London, including a boat ride on the Thames
Pre-trip talks ensure that you have background on the sites; these talks are reinforced with academic handouts put together by instructors and issued to all on the trip. Course-related visits may also be integrated into the cultural studies trips. The costs of transportation, packed lunches and all entrance fees for day-long cultural studies trips are included in your tuition fees.