How Can I Use Discussion to Facilitate Learning?
Focused, energizing classroom discussions that involve everyone are what higher education instructors dream of. Too bad they don’t just happen. But you can learn the careful planning and structuring it takes to make them happen. We show you how to structure and plan classroom discussions to maximize student engagement, student participation, and learning.
Structure and plan classroom discussion
Focused, energizing classroom discussions that involve everyone are what higher education instructors dream of. Too bad they don’t just happen.
But you can learn the careful planning and structuring it takes to make them happen in How Can I Use Discussion to Facilitate Learning? — a Magna 20-Minute Mentor.
This fast and focused video seminar will show you how to structure and plan classroom discussions to maximize student engagement, student participation, and learning.
Classroom norms that hinder discussion … and how to avoid them
Presenter Jay Howard, a widely published author and dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Butler University, reveals classroom norms that inhibit discussion:
- The norm of civil attitudes – which says it’s OK if students only look like they’re paying attention
- The norm of the consolidation of responsibility – which says that no matter how large your class, five to seven students will do most of the talking
You’ll learn proven teaching strategies to avoid these hazards and increase student engagement and student participation by:
- Changing routines for the first day of class
- Rewarding and reinforcing the participation you want
- Using small student-discussion groups
After completing this grading and feedback focused program, you’ll be able to:
- Recognize when classroom norms limit student engagement and participation
- Access new pedagogical tools to engage students in classroom discussion
- Implement new teaching strategies to increase the quality and focus of classroom discussion
Top educational value
Research has documented the benefits of classroom discussion, including:
- Increased learning
- Improved critical thinking
- Greater ownership of their learning experience
- More fun
Since the need for teaching strategies to improve student engagement cuts across disciplines, consider purchasing a Campus Access License so your colleagues across campus can access this important content.
Product Code: PM13AA
Jay Howard is professor of Sociology and Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Butler University in Indianapolis. Previously, he served as Interim Vice Chancellor and Dean (2007-09), Assistant Dean for Budget and Planning (1999-2002), Head of the Division of Liberal Arts, and Professor of Sociology at Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus.
Dr. Howard’s research interests range from the scholarship of teaching and learning to religion and popular culture. His most recent book, Discussion in the College Classroom: Getting Your Students Engaged and Participating in Person and Online, was published by Jossey-Bass (2015).
Dr. Howard was Deputy Editor of the American Sociological Association journal, Teaching Sociology, from 2003 to 2009. He is a Fellow of the P.A. Mack Center at Indiana University for Inquiry on Teaching and Learning. He was also the 2006-07 president of the North Central Sociological Association and an elected member of the Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation Board of Trustees. Dr. Howard earned a BA in sociology from Indiana University South Bend and an M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Notre Dame.
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