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Active Learning

Techniques for Active Learning

Techniques for Active Learning (a few examples)

The Pause Procedure -- Pause for two minutes every 12 to 18 minutes, encouraging students to discuss and rework notes in pairs. This approach encourages students to consider their understanding of the lecture material, including its organization.

Retrieval Practice -- Pause for two or three minutes every 15 minutes, having students write everything they can remember from preceding class segment.

Demonstrations -- Ask students to predict the result of a demonstration, briefly discussing with a neighbor. After demonstration, ask them to discuss the observed result and how it may have differed from their prediction; follow up with instructor explanation.

Think-Pair-Share -- Ask students a question that requires higher order thinking (e.g., application, analysis, or evaluation levels within Bloom’s taxonomy). Ask students to think or write about an answer for one minute, then turn to a peer to discuss their responses for two minutes.

Minute Papers -- Ask students a question that requires them to reflect on their learning or to engage in critical thinking. Have them write for one minute. Ask students to share responses to stimulate discussion or collect all responses to inform future class sessions.

Source: Brame, C. Active Learning. 

Here is a continuum of active learning strategies that are quick and simple to employ to those that are complex and take more time to plan and execute, based on the framework and examples developed by the University of Michigan (direct link above).

 Active Learning Techniques continuum diagram by U. of Michigan

Examples of Active Learning


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