UCTL/Active Learning

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General Information about Active Learning

Memorization Strategies: some whimsey

This kind of topic sometimes has a bad rap. But it is essential that students have some strategies for memorising.

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Challenges Of Participatory Culture

Henry Jenkins from MIT wrote a great paper on "Confronting the Challenges Of Participatory Culture: Media Education for the 21st Century"

Excellent read and very inspiring as well as rich in information and reference. To me, he addresses everything you need to know about active learning. He addresses issues like the core media skills needed, how we should teach, and the core problems. (-Colby Stuart, SCoPE forums)

A quote: "The new skills include:

  • Play— the capacity to experiment with one’s surroundings as a form of problem-solving
  • Performance— the ability to adopt alternative identities for the purpose of improvisation

and discovery

  • Simulation— the ability to interpret and construct dynamic models of real-world


  • Appropriation— the ability to meaningfully sample and remix media content
  • Multitasking— the ability to scan one’s environment and shift focus as needed to salient


  • Distributed Cognition— the ability to interact meaningfully with tools that expand

mental capacities

  • Collective Intelligence— the ability to pool knowledge and compare notes with

others toward a common goal

  • Judgment— the ability to evaluate the reliability and credibility of different information


  • Transmedia Navigation— the ability to follow the flow of stories and information

across multiple modalities

  • Networking— the ability to search for,synthesize,and disseminate information
  • Negotiation— the ability to travel across diverse communities,discerning and respecting multiple perspectives,and grasping and following alternative norms. "


Overview A quote: "Surprisingly, educators' use of the term "active learning" has relied more on intuitive understanding than a common definition. Consequently, many faculty assert that all learning is inherently active and that students are therefore actively involved while listening to formal presentations in the classroom. Analysis of the research literature (Chickering and Gamson 1987), however, suggests that students must do more than just listen: They must read, write, discuss, or be engaged in solving problems. Most important, to be actively involved, students must engage in such higher-order thinking tasks as analysis, synthesis, and evaluation. Within this context, it is proposed that strategies promoting active learning be defined as instructional activities involving students in doing things and thinking about what they are doing"

Seven Principles of Good Practice: Chickering and Gamson

Chickering and Gamson's seven principles of good practice
The "seven principles" concisely summarize decades of educational research findings about the kinds of teaching/learning activities most of teaching/learning activities that are most likely to improve learning outcomes.

Good practice in undergraduate education:

  1. encourages contact between students and faculty,
  2. develops reciprocity and cooperation among students,
  3. encourages active learning,
  4. gives prompt feedback,
  5. emphasizes time on task,
  6. communicates high expectations, and
  7. respects diverse talents and ways of learning. 

Seven principles using Technology as a Lever the 1997 article.