The Odyssey Program

Learning Goals of the Odyssey Program

The below list identifies the four chief learning goals of the Odyssey program. No one Odyssey project is expected to achieve all four goals, and engaged learning experiences will understandably be designed with varying degrees of emphasis on the different goals. By completing the graduation requirement of at least three Odyssey credits in three different categories, however, Hendrix students achieve the following four outcomes:

Enhancement of learning — both what they know and how they come to know — by:

  • the examination of ideas in new contexts,
  • the application of theories to practice,
  • the first-hand discovery of how things are in the world,
  • the exercise of, and reflection upon, their powers of judgment in practical situations.

Vocational Self-Discovery and Professional Development through:

  • the discovery of qualities and capacities they possess for acting effectively in the world,
  • the exercise of resourcefulness and problem-solving abilities in new and complex situations,
  • the identification and exploration of vocational and a-vocational passions,
  • the reflective delineation of values, life plans, graduation and career goals in light of hands-on experience.

Development of a sense of ownership over one’s educational pursuits and of the habits conducive to life-long learning by:

  • independently structuring educational projects in accordance with self-selected learning goals
  • applying previous learning to new contexts in creative and novel ways
  • discovering unforeseen connections among disciplines, schools of thought, or social practices,
  • learning to learn from critical reflection upon both success and failure.

Increased awareness of one’s responsibility for linking action and understanding in the effort to respond effectively to the social, spiritual, and ecological needs of our time by:

  • discovering one’s capacity to explore the world and act as an effective agent within it,
  • becoming reflective and articulate about how one’s values and beliefs influence one’s actions and actions shape and reveal one’s values and beliefs.
  • gaining exposure to, and critically reflecting upon, previously unfamiliar avenues of response to intellectual queries and social problems,
  • making conscious decisions in the selection or design of hands on projects responsive to local and/or global communities.