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Facilitating active learning in online learning environments

Active Learning
Engaging Students in Online Courses


This resource is meant to aid in the identification, practice, and implementation of research-based active learning approaches. It can be used in both online and face-to-face learning environments. This guide should help you to create and recognize opportunities to integrate active learning activities that facilitate desired student learning outcomes into your course in both planned and dynamic ways.


Case Studies

The Case Studies approach has student teams review a written study of a real-world scenario containing a field-related problem or situation. Case studies usually include a brief history of the situation and present a dilemma the main character is facing. Team members apply course concepts to identify and evaluate alternative approaches to solving the problem.

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Minute Paper/Muddiest Point

The Minute Paper/Muddiest Point approaches have students write quick responses to a question to help instructors gain insight or understanding of content. Questions could include: “What was the most important thing you learned today?“; “What important question remains unanswered?”; or “What was the muddiest point in _______ ?

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The Fishbowl Discussion is a teaching strategy that encourages full student participation, reflection, and depth of knowledge. A small group of students is selected to be the fish (in the fishbowl) while the rest of the class will be observers (out of the fishbowl). Students in the bowl participate in a discussion by responding to an instructor's prompt. Students outside of the bowl listen and reflect on the alternative viewpoints.

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Pro and Con Grid

The Pro and Con Grid approach has students follow a decision-making process by reviewing an issue, creating a list of pro and con arguments, and making a decision based on the weight and analysis of those points. A review of students’ lists reveals the depth and breadth of their analyses, capacity for objectivity, and strength of their decision-making skills.

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The Think/Pair/Share approach poses a question, asks students to reflect on the question, and has them share their ideas with others. Think has students reflect before speaking to organize their thoughts. Pair and Share ask students to compare and contrast their thoughts with others and rehearse their responses before sharing them with the whole class.

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Topics Map > Active Learning > Online
Results : 1-13 of 13
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No.Document TitleIDUpdatedHits
1**** Active Learning in Large Courses (online)1040332023-04-262079
2**** Active Learning in Online Courses1044042023-03-233589
3Background Knowledge Probe in Large Courses (online)1035992023-03-231976
4Using Online Asynchronous Discussions to Increase Student Engagement & Active Learning1040342023-03-214268
5Online Peer Editing1079542023-01-182277
6Minute Paper/Muddiest Point in Large Courses (online)1033682022-10-282484
7Case Studies (online)1044052022-10-281882
8Fishbowl Discussion (online)1079822022-10-285040
9Think/Pair/Share (online)1044012022-10-283079
10Minute Paper/Muddiest Point (online)1044072022-10-282456
11Pro and Con Grid in Large Courses (online)1037752022-10-281955
12Defining Features Matrix in Large Courses (online)1035842022-10-282194
13Pro and Con Grid (online)1044082022-10-282325

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