Learning Online is not a Spectator Sport: How to Make it Active
From Online Learning Insights
“Learning is not a spectator sport.” Chickering & Gamson, excerpt from the Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education, (1987). Principle number three, ‘Good practice encourages active learning.’
Agreed! Studies prove time and again that college students do not learn when listening passively. To clarify further, twenty minutes of listening to a lecture is the maximum amount of time that students can process information effectively according to research cited in Does Active Learning Work, A Review of the Research (Prince, 2004). The method of lecturing as we know it may be coming to an end. In my last post I examined the concept of active learning, where students are engaged and involved in the learning process. I provided several examples of active learning in college classrooms across the nation that are replacing traditional lectures. But what about active learning in online courses? What does active learning ‘look like’ in a virtual environment when the face-to-face component is missing? This post will provide educators with course design strategies for implementing active learning principles in online environments that will lead to rich learning experiences for students. I’ll also include specific examples of active learning activities in general education courses delivered in the online format.