Engaging students through interactive activities, discussions, feedback and AI-enhanced technologies resulted in improved academic performance compared to traditional lectures, lessons or readings, faculty from Carnegie Mellon University’s Human-Computer Interaction Institute concluded after collecting research into active learning.
The research also found that effective active learning methods use not only hands-on and minds-on approaches, but also hearts-on, providing increased emotional and social support.
Interest in active learning grew as the COVID-19 pandemic challenged educators to find new ways to engage students. The pandemic made it clear that traditional approaches to education may not be the best way to learn, but questions persisted about what active learning is and how best to use it to teach and engage and excite students.
Nesra Yannier, faculty in HCII, and Ken Koedinger, a professor of human-computer interaction and psychology, collaborated with researchers at several universities including Stanford, Harvard and University of Washington, to summarize the important findings around active learning.
“We wanted to see what we learned from teaching and learning during COVID and what could be brought back into the classroom,” Yannier said. “COVID forced educators to engage students in novel ways, and teachers were experimenting with new technology.“
The collected studies showed that active learning can put students in the driver’s seat of their lessons. Active learning techniques encourage students to produce thoughts and get feedback through interactive settings rather than passively receiving information as is common in pervasive approaches to education like lectures and readings.
One study included in the collection showed the benefits of physical activity for creativity and idea generation. Another found that while college students think they learn more in traditional lectures than through active learning approaches, they do not. Active learning produces better outcomes.
Source: Science Daily