University of Waterloo
200 University Avenue West
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada N2L 3G1
Phone: (519) 888-4567 ext 32215
Fax: (519) 746-8115
8:30 -- coffee and light refreshments
9:00 - 10:00
Despite overwhelming evidence indicating that students learn more when they are actively engaged in the classroom than they do in a passive lecture environment, most instructors still use traditional methods, at least in large-enrollment college STEM courses (see Stains et. al., Science 2018). Why do these inferior methods of instruction persist? And how are these methods of instruction, traditional lecturing and active learning, even defined? I will draw on our findings in a recent article (see Deslauriers et. al., PNAS 2018) to discuss some of the obstacles hindering the wide adoption of research-based active learning methods and present various ways to mitigate these. In particular, I will discuss the interplay between fluency, feeling of learning, and actual learning. In addition, I will provide a detailed description of the types of active learning currently being used in small and large enrollment science courses at Harvard University.
10:00 - 10:30 -- break
10:30 - 11:30 -- extended Question & Answer with Louis, who will share his thoughts on the nuts and bolts of adopting new teaching strategies.