"experiential" query

Michael Quinion wordseditor at WORLDWIDEWORDS.ORG
Thu Sep 14 11:27:59 UTC 2006

Gerald Cohen wrote:

> Today a senior colleague pointed to a sign on a campus van which said:
> "Student Design & Experiential Learning Center" and asked if I ever
> heard "experiential" before.  I hadn't, and neither had he.  The word
> is based on "experience" and refers to learning by doing.

"Experiential" is very familiar to me, though I've no connection with the
academic or educational fields. I'd consider it a semi-technical term in
psychology. The OED's entry for it has examples in the obvious sense of
"pertaining to experience or observation" from 1816 and an example of
"experientially" from 1646.

Michael Quinion
Editor, World Wide Words
E-mail: wordseditor at worldwidewords.org
Web: http://www.worldwidewords.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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