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Teaching Methods, Encouraging Interaction, and Asking Questions

Teaching Methods, Encouraging Interaction, and Asking Questions

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Teaching Methods, Encouraging Interaction, and Asking Questions

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  1. Teaching Methods, Encouraging Interaction, and Asking Questions Regina Frey, Director Washington University Teaching Center Eads Hall 105 Phone: 314-935-6810 Fax: 314-935-7917 Washington University Teaching Center

  2. Outline • Teaching methods/strategies • What makes an effective discussion class • Techniques for encouraging participation • Types of questions • Learning hierarchy Washington University Teaching Center

  3. Teaching Strategies/Methods • Many teaching methods can be grouped into 4 general categories • Lecture • Discussion • Group work - Active learning, Guided inquiry • Individual learning • Not one superior teaching method • Teaching strategies are NOT exclusive of one another; use a combination Washington University Teaching Center

  4. What makes an Effective Discussion Class • Planning and preparation of the class are important. • Define objectives for each session and a plan to obtain those objectives. • Have a number of carefully crafted questions to ensure that the discussion class moves forward and that the main points are brought forth. • Wrap-up at the end to summarize the important points that were discussed during the session. • The instructor needs to create a comfortable and non-threatening environment. • The instructor must show respect for all questions and comments. • The instructor should do a summation at critical points in the session. Washington University Teaching Center

  5. Techniques for Encouraging Participation • Ask appropriate questions – see subsequent slides • Wait for student responses • Redirect questions to other students • Place the emphasis on student ideas • Avoid interrupting student answers • Use positive reinforcement • Use students’ names Washington University Teaching Center

  6. Techniques for Encouraging Participation • Repeat student responses to summarize or clarify ideas • Pick up on comments or suggestions that were not discussed • Use nonverbal cues to encourage participation • Could assign students to solve the problems at the board and lead the discussion • Use small groups to solve problems • Allow students to think nonlinearly about the problem - brainstorm Washington University Teaching Center

  7. Types of Questions • Managerial (20% of all questions asked by instructors) • Deal with classroom operations • Does anyone have any questions about the assignment? • Rhetorical • Used to emphasize a point or reinforce a statement • ‘Can anyone look at our reduced standing in the world today and say, "Let's have four more years of this"?’ (Ronald Reagan, 1980 Republican National  Convention Acceptance Address) • Closed (60% of all questions asked by instructors) • Used to check retention or to focus thinking on a particular point • What is the limit definition of the derivative? • Open (20% of all questions asked by instructors) • Used to promote discussion or student interaction • Given the following data points, how might we best fit them? Washington University Teaching Center

  8. Types of Questions to Encourage Participation • Probing questions • Clarifying – used when a student’s comment is unclear or vague • Could you elaborate on that point? • Increasing critical awareness – used to explore the student’s thought process • What are your assumptions? • Refocusing – encourages the student to see that concept from another perspective • Let’s analyze that answer. • Prompting – used to help refine a student’s statement or thoughts • Redirecting (to another student) – used to encourage student-student discussion • Divergent questions – no right or wrong answer; encourages exploration of ideas • What are some ways to modify the social security system to handle the baby-boomer generation? • Higher-order questions – based on Bloom’s taxonomy Washington University Teaching Center

  9. Asking Questions Based on Bloom’s Taxonomy Washington University Teaching Center

  10. For more teaching tips, visit our website! Click on Teaching Assistants Washington University Teaching Center