Ito, H., & Kawazoe, N. (2015). Active Learning for Creating Innovators: Employability Skills beyond Industrial Needs. International Journal of Higher Education, 4(2).

This article discusses a government sponsored program in Japan that identifies the skills university students need in order to be employed in today’s market. The study describes a course in Business Planning and Practice and how it intends to use active learning principles to engage students better. The paper overall suggests that students create “deeper” learning experiences when learning subjects actively, but also notes the time it takes to execute these experiences. Moreover, the Japanese student spends less time in class compared to the US.  [Annotated by: Rob Esler, GCC Performing Arts Department]

Wanner, T. (2015). Enhancing Student Engagement and Active Learning through Just-in-Time Teaching and the Use of Powerpoint. International Journal Of Teaching And Learning In Higher Education, 27(1), 154-163.

This article tests and reviews an active learning approach that centers around using Power Point as “organizational tool” for students that they prepare prior to a given lecture.  The method goes like this:  Instructors provide students with 3 key questions prior to class and students are asked to prepare a brief Power Point (PP) addressing the three questions (a template of 3 slides is given to students).  Student PPs are submitted prior to the lecture and the instructor reviews them in what the author calls a “just in time” format – meaning shortly before class.  This review will reveal gaps in knowledge and understanding and the instructor adjust the lecture accordingly. In class, students discuss the 3 key questions in small groups and then the instructor brings the class together to review all 3 key questions.  The instructor may use “sample student PPs” anonymously as talking points.  The instructor also then moves ahead with his or her main lecture – but now adjusted according to the review of the PPs.  In this research, the instructor also included a follow-up “reflective quiz” for assessment.  The finding reported suggest that the majority of students (67%) for the approach to be helpful!  [Annotated by: David Boninger, GCC Psychology Department]

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