Improving Student Learning from Lecture

Research has shown that extensive lecturing is on average less effective than other modes of instruction (Freeman et al., 2014; Wieman, 2014). But learning from lectures can be improved. Research in the learning sciences has identified potential weaknesses in the lecture-learning process (Cerbin, 2018). By working to overcome these weaknesses, instructors can narrow the lecture-learning gap.

The article below argues that to improve learning from lecture, teachers will need to adopt strategies to help students

acquire essential background knowledge before lecture so they can make sense of new lecture material

manage cognitive overload during lecture so they have the mental resources available to process (attend to and think about) the lecture material

engage in deep learning processes during lecture so they integrate new lecture material with prior knowledge

elaborate, consolidate and retain what they learn after lecture so they can remember, use and apply what they learned in lecture


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