Can We Measure the Effects of High-Engagement Teaching?
by Professor Mark MacLean
Abstract: In 2011, Deslauriers, Schelew, and Wieman published in Science the results of an experiment that compared a high-engagement instructional method to traditional lecturing in a first-year physics course. They concluded that a novice instructor trained in this high-engagement method "doubled the learning" over the experienced, traditional lecturer during the week-long experiment. We decided to explore the impacts of this high-engagement method in a first-year calculus course. We considered two questions:
Q1: Compared to traditional, lecture-based instruction, will students demonstrate more sophisticated reasoning on an immediate test of learning when high-engagement learning is implemented on a single topic (100 to 150 minutes of class time)?
Q2: Will any effects persist to later, standard tests of learning in the course?
I will discuss this experiment and its results.
This is joint work with Warren Code, David Kohler, and Costanza Piccolo, and is sponsored by the Carl Wieman Science Education Initiative at UBC.