Lectures Aren't Just Boring, They're Ineffective, Too, Study Finds
Are your lectures droning on? Change it up every 10 minutes with more active teaching techniques and more students will succeed, researchers say. A new study finds that undergraduate students in classes with traditional stand-and-deliver lectures are 1.5 times more likely to fail than students in classes that use more stimulating, so-called active learning methods. “Universities were founded in Western Europe in 1050 and lecturing has been the predominant form of teaching ever since,” says biologist Scott Freeman of the University of Washington, Seattle. But many scholars have challenged the “sage on a stage” approach to teaching science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) courses, arguing that engaging students with questions or group activities is more effective. To weigh the evidence, Freeman and a group of colleagues analyzed 225 studies of undergraduate STEM teaching methods. Freeman says he’s started using such techniques even in large classes.
Related: Flipped Learning
• Active Learning Theory