Dear Content Contributor,
Higher Education Institution (HEI) is a special community where lecturers interact with old and new sets of students that enroll for courses at each semester or academic session. It is imperative for lecturers to be “dynamic and flexible in their teaching methodologies or the approaches to be adopted each semester, since the students to be taught are not the same physiologically, psychologically, in population, and also in previous knowledge in the subject, which may not be well know to the lecturer(s) in charge”.
Doug Ward, in her published article titled, "Why Change our Approach to Teaching”, narrated that Jennifer Roberts first noticed the difference a few years ago in the Geology 101 class. She said that the course regularly draws 300 or more students a semester, and Roberts, an Associate Professor of Geology, was teaching in much the same way she had since she took over the course in 2002 in terms of lecture and exam. The noticeable problem with this was that exam scores were dropping, she said, and as she interacted with students, she found that they had less understanding of the materials than the students had had just two or three years before. Read More
Again, problems do emanate when there is no proper coordination when we have more than one lecturer teaching a course or subject, though the same course, the students who are learners can quickly make a serious comparison, even if there is going to be difference, the gap should not be too wide.
Let us look at Maryellen Weimer's view that "Over the years, it has been discovered that many faculty find it difficult to choose appropriate approach fit for their teaching deployment thus, affecting the students' learning and resulted into downward in students’ grade”. Let us examine a published article titled “Effective Teaching Strategies: The Importance of Marrying Content and Process”by Maryellen Weimer. She stated that a love of the material and a willingness to convey such to students only enhances learning. The problem occurs when the content matters more than anything else, faculty are prevented from using methods that enhance student learning. Not only does this hurt the students, but it hurts faculty as well. Read more
Having used any approach to teach a course, we are to ask our students what their perceptions are about the approach deployed and how the approach made it convenient for them to learn. Greg Cooper in “Test Prep: Getting Your Students to Examine Their Approach”, stated that I was inspired by Maryellen Weimer’s article on “Teaching Metacognition to Improve Student Learning” and the accompanying article by Kimberly Tanner on “Promoting Student Metacognition.”
Tanner reflected on a comment I have heard many times: “…it’s my job to teach [your discipline or learning outcome goes here], and not study strategies.” How often have we heard that our students don’t know how to learn? Regardless of whose fault it is, Weimer’s article shows how relatively easy it is to incorporate practical “meta-learning” strategies into our lesson plans. Read more
It is high time we gave such an idea like this a thought and begin to see how we can introduce it to our teaching and learning activities in FUNAAB.
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Dr. O. Folorunso
Director, Centre for Innovation and Strategy in Learning and Teaching