Independence at school, both the ability to develop among students and the ability to mobilise at home, is widely developed in classes, in various forms and with very different degrees of freedom. Students’ activity and experience of autonomous work situations are studied here to better understand what they do there and what they say about these school schemes. Building on the anthropological research programme of the Action Course, this memory analyses the actual activity of 2 students and seeks to gain access to their experience of these learning times. It focuses on a specific pedagogical format: autonomous workshops, during mathematics sessions. However, it has yielded general results that support several findings of robust scientific research on student autonomy.