I. One purpose of a field experience report is to organize and evaluate a nonacademic experience and apply the experience to a specific learning goal. Conversely, you can apply your theoretical learning to the field experience.
II. Before you begin writing your report, you should do the following:
A. Understand the instructor's specific requirements for format and content.
B. Decide on your goal in participating in the field experience. Why are you doing it? What do you expect to learn or get out of it? What concepts do you want to apply? What theories do you hope to test?
C. While in the field, keep consistent notes on your activities (times involved, benefits, readings, people encountered, projects and so on). Sometimes a daily journal is the most reliable vehicle.
D. Organize your notes so that you gather together all items relating to a single topic. In this way, you can easily use the material you've amassed.
III. Your report should be in the required format and may contain the following elements:
A. Statement of your purpose in participating in the field experience.
B. Evaluation of the experience in light of this original purpose. Did the experience fulfill your expectations? What did you actually learn in the end?
C. Discussion of the main components of the field experience that contributed to your learning goal. Support your discussion with appropriate examples and/or data to convey the nature of the experience.
D. Discussion of any limitations that were part of the field experience. Indicate how each component or limitation contributed to what you learned from the experience.
E. A summary briefly recapping the salient points of the field experience in light of your goal.
IV. Your report may be evaluated on some or all of the following points:
A. Clarity of your statement of purpose.
B. Extent to which you fulfill your stated purpose.
C. Completeness of your data.
D. Application of the data to your learning goals.
VI. Pitfall: The tendency to make the report into pure narrative, without setting up clear relationships between the experience and your learning goals.