Advances in educational research and neuroscience are helping us to better understand how learning works and the many ways in which university education can be optimized for today’s large and diverse student population. Supporting more active and collaborative (student-centered) approaches to teaching and learning is a key finding of these discoveries.

Active learning promotes greater student engagement and higher-order thinking by encouraging students to work together as active contributors to knowledge creation. To help ensure that these strategies are truly collaborative, class activities must be intentionally designed, implemented, and facilitated by the course instructor. Another distinct feature of active learning is that it uses an eclectic approach and is, as a result, better suited to serving the large and diverse student population in higher education.

The following module discusses some of the key concepts you will need to know in order to get started using Active Learning in your courses.

By the end of this module, you should be able to:

  • Implement active learning techniques in your class that promote student engagement, provide a scaffold for learning success, and support your learning outcomes

The next section will:

  • define active learning and explain how it differs from traditional lecture-based teaching.