Reshape Student’s Idea of the Process of Learning | Instructor-Student Role Reversal

“Teaching is not a lost art, but the regard for it is a lost tradition.” – Jacques Brown

Tradition is meant to evolve, not necessarily remove. Contrary to traditional educational practices, wherein the power is instructor-centered requires a transformational effect on former traditional educational practices of learning itself, the instructors’ role, and on the learner’s disposition towards learning. Taking a step-back from traditional lecture to a non-traditional, informal view of learning; problem-based learning beings with establishing a foundation that is authentic and meaningful within the learning community, so that students realize they have the greater responsibility for their own learning. Utilizing problem-based learning approaches requires a transition from the traditional model of learning, so “relearning” and “revaluing” the learning process is vital before reshaping a student’s perception of their learning process.

I believe this form of learning provides students with creative, flexible, and imaginary licenses as it pertains to their discipline or subject to engage in activities or work that encourages a greater depth of reasoning, critical thinking, and creativity, which is optimal to learning. The process is semi-sructured, but still provides learners with an abundance of opportunities to be engaged, interact, self-monitor, increase self-efficacy, and autonomy in their learning. This learning environment creates depth learning in which entails creativity and non-traditional instructional strategies to impact and influence approaches to cognitive responses, social development, communication skills and potential opportunities that learners can not only transfer applied knowledge to real situations, but produce and construct their own knowledge in novel environments, so learning goes beyond the book and the learning community. Learners are empowered, so the power differential becomes almost concealed, thus making the student the expert in which creates confidence to take risks, make mistakes, and ask or seek help for clarification.

Learning is through discovery, social interaction, observation, and assistance or guidance, so influencing in-depth learning and engagement in prompting discussion(s) that students will process the information learned, studied or experienced by applying it, evaluating it, or comparing their understanding of it with their peers, which reinforces the peer-to-peer interaction and increases students’ involvement and participation in the course. Problem-based learning is an integral component to learning so that students are more involved and engage in the process of inquiry, investigation, and interpretation in which students are able to embark on these specific inquires and solve or create a resolution to problems or fill in the gaps and apply in actual settings or situations. So, I think re-conceptualizing traditions is a great alternative in finding a balance between tradition and non-traditional learning, so students are able to authentically demonstrate their knowledge utilizing appropriate methods suitable to the circumstances, and develop the confidence and competence to participate in meaningful learning communities or non-academic communities.

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Surprise! Freire is Still Relevant

Reading through some of Freire’s thoughts and ideas and hearing them from him in an interview has been interesting.  Critical thinking and moving away from the sage on the stage views of education have been going on since I started grad school. Rarely though does this come up in class.  Frequently this is what I […]

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Inquiry is at the core of students’ essence

Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed is a constant exchange of arguments between reactionary and revolutionary positions. While I have long flirted with the reactionary nineteenth century society, I am most stimulated by some of Freire’s assertions regarding a revolution in education – and ultimately, in society. His statement “Education is suffering from narration sickness” summarizes […]

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Cultivating Curiosity

The author W. Gardner Campbell seems to be critiquing the arcane strategies our education uses to “cut costs and increase access”.  He disparages “click-counts” and login tracking for being impersonal means for measuring student involvement and comprehension.  In a larger classroom environment, these can be efficient tools for preventing students from slipping under the radar. […]

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