Active learning (Example I)

Example I: From passive learning to active learning (method development)

Old method:

When I started to teach the petrology course at Tanta University, Egypt, my teaching method was mainly centered around passive teaching where the basic knowledge and the foundational concepts were transferred from me as a lecturer to the students using whiteboard and PowerPoint presentations.

Problems raised using the old method:

With time and after students’ reviews, I have figured out that the students were responsible for absorbing the presented knowledge on their own terms, and the students were not giving enough attention during the classes.

New teaching method – changes in the learning attitude:

I have decided to change my teaching methods from passive to active learning by keeping asking and discussing with the students during the lecturers to grab their attention and to train them with skills of analyzing the relationships between different concepts. Changes in the learning attitude were observed as 1) the students spent more time studying the petrology course, and 2) they started to ask more fundamental questions during the lectures. The changes in the learning attitude indicated that the students started to explore the petrology topic in more detail. Since that time (i.e., 2002), I have started to use active learning in all of my courses.

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