What Is Work-Based Learning (WBL)?
Work-based learning (WBL) is an instructional method that links work experience with school-based instruction to prepare students for both college and career by
- promoting and developing critical thinking;
- fostering social and psychological development; and
- enhancing career- and workplace-related knowledge.
High-quality WBL enhances students’ understanding of classroom theory through participation in its application in the work environment. It gives students the opportunity to engage meaningfully with the work experience and to take responsibility for their learning.
NOTE: WBL should not be confused with “workplace" or "worksite" learning, which refer to any form of learning that occurs at a worksite.
Four Essential Characteristics of WBL
Example of a WBL Program
Sunlake High School student, Brandon Gould, is learning about electrical engineering by interning at SEL Engineering, Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories as part of a CTE WBL program.
WBL vs. Work Release and Work-Study
It’s important to understand what WBL is not. Two terms that some people confuse with WBL are work release and work-study programs.
Click each term below to learn more.
Benefits of WBL
Click each group below to see the benefits for students and employers.
The WBL Teacher’s Role
Click each timeframe below for a brief overview of the teacher’s responsibilities.
Quick Check #1
Let's see if you remember what WBL is and what it is not.
Identify the description on each flashcard below as either
- work release, or