Retention Rates from Different Instructional Strategies

Thinking about thinking lately has led me to wonder how students learn best. Below is a chart I recreated from a book I am reading now by Elizabeth Berkley (2010) called Student Engagement Techniques: A Handbook for College Faculty.

The data shows that teaching others how to do something and practicing by doing make for lasting learning experiences. So, this makes me ask, if teachers are aware of this, then why do they spend so much time lecturing, using video, and reading. 

I call out to all right now to put an end to spending class time on those 3 things. Ask yourself:
  • do I like being lectured to?
  • do I like reading in class?
  • do I have to watch this video?
  • am I enjoying this lesson?
If your answers are NO, then the answers from your students are probably the same. Ask yourself "how do I like to learn? Then, think of what alternatives you can use. Better yet, present this data to your students and ask them what alternatives they want. This will, without a doubt, increase student satisfaction and the student experience.

You might be able to find some alternatives for classroom delivery methods from:
MindShift's collection of Activities for Teams, Innovators, and Change Agents and in this package of essential resources for training and HR professionals called 101ActivitiesTeaching published by pfeiffer 


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