Experience Corps®


Categories associated with best practice:

  • Health Equity
  • Individual
  • Organization
  • PP-icon1
  • Early Childhood (ages 3-5) icon
  • Children (ages 6-12) icon
  • Adult (ages 25-64) icon
  • Seniors (ages 65+) icon
  • Education and literacy
  • Elementary School Icon 1
  • English
  • Mental Health Icon 2
  • Personal health practices and coping skills
  • Physical Activity
  • Social Relationships That Respect Diversity

Determinants of Health: Personal health practices and coping skills, Education, literacy and life-long learning, Social relationships (including those that respect diversity)


ExperienceCorps® (EC) is a high-commitment national (US) volunteer program that brings older adults into high-need public elementary schools to improve academic achievement of students. It is viewed as a health promotion program for the older volunteers. Local communities implement EC programs, which are usually hosted at the city level by non-profit or public agencies.

The impacts of EC were evaluated in a quasi-experimental study involving volunteers from 17 EC sites across the US. Compared to the matched comparison group, EC volunteers reported fewer depressive symptoms and functional limitations two years after participation in the program. With respect to impacts on students, a randomized trial involving students from 23 schools in three urban cities also found positive impacts reading outcomes.

Primary Source Document

SI Hong and N Morrow-Howell, Health outcomes of ExperienceCorps®: A High-commitment volunteer program Social Science & Medicine. 2010: 71;414-

Contact information of developer(s) and/or implementer(s)

AARP Foundation Experience Corp National Office Location: 401 9th St. NW, 4th Floor Washington, DC 20004 Mailing Address: Experience Corps National Office 601 E St. NW Washington, DC 20049 Main Number: 1-888-OUR-AARP (1-888-687-2277)

Intervention Focus

Intervention Goal / ObjectiveLevel(s) TargetedEquity Focus
Build academic skills and mentor students.
  • Individual level
People living in conditions of disadvantage are not explicitly stated to be a target population of the intervention.

Health Issue(s) that is/are addressed by the Intervention

Health Promotion

  • Mental Health
  • Physical Activity
  • Other

Risk Reduction

    Specific Activities of the Intervention

    • Training offered to deliver the intervention
    • Group process/program
    • Other training session

    Priority/Target Population for Intervention Delivery

    Life Stage

    • Early childhood (age 3-5 years)
    • Children (age 6-12 years)
    • Adults (age 25-64 years)
    • Seniors (age 65+ years)


    Educational Settings

    • Elementary school

    Community Setting



      Outcomes and Impact Chart
      Level of ImpactDescription of OutcomeEquity Focus
      Individual LevelEC members experienced more positive changes in functional limitations post-test compared to the control group (p < .001).Reported outcomes do not distinguish findings specific to people living in conditions of disadvantage.


      Implementation History

      • Multiple implementations - Similar settings/populations/providers - The intervention has been implemented more than twice in the same setting with the same population by similar providers, and is theoretically applicable to other settings and/or populations. This can include multiple implementations during the same time period. *Each implementation of the intervention must have been substantially the same and must have demonstrated positive results for the primary objectives of the intervention.

      Expertise Required for Implementation within the Context of the Intervention

      • Specialized skills training provided as part of the Intervention - The intervention does not require individuals or groups with highly specialized training, but requires that individuals or groups be trained as part of the implementation of the intervention.

      Are there supports available for implementation

      Yes. To be a part of the EC national program, local sites adhere to program missions and standards, participate in national training and support activities, and receive assistance with fund-raising and expansion efforts.

      Are there resources and/or products associated with the interventions