Session S58a (Wednesday, 9:30am, Wartik 108)

P640: I gave my students more work and they thanked me: Using technology to implement constructivist techniques

Autumn Sutherlin (Abilene Christian University, USA)

In a first semester biochemistry course, students did assigned reading followed by just-in-time teaching warm-up questions, which they responded to online before class.  Class consisted of mini-lectures based on answers to the warm-up questions interspersed with clicker questions, followed by peer instruction. In peer instruction, if 30-70% of the students got the correct answer on the clicker question, students worked in small groups to come to a consensus.  This protocol allowed me to find areas of content where students were struggling and to focus on areas that require higher order thinking skills. The performance on exams of this year’s class was compared to the previous year’s class.  On two of the four exams the treatment group performed statistically significantly better on exams. Pre- and post-attitudinal studies along with course evaluations showed that the students appreciated the use of the warm-up and peer instruction questions.


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