If you incorporate active-learning strategies into your teaching, you may find that students don’t automatically embrace this new learning approach. Students may just sit back and listen, waiting for their peers to answer. They may engage enthusiastically at first, but that exuberance wanes in the face of a busy semester. Students may even openly resist and complain (though this is somewhat rare). As instructors, we can be mindful about how we shape the class structure and culture to make engagement feel safe and worthwhile. You, as an educator, have the power to impact student behaviors and perspectives with what you say and do, thus actively affecting how students are engaging with the curriculum and the content.
We have developed an extensive set of guidance for instructors on generating student engagement in active learning strategies.
This project was partially supported by the Science Education Initiative and the Center for STEM Learning, at CU Boulder.