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Active Learning & Pedagogy Annotated Bibliography - Part 1

Adams, Dennis & Mary Hamm. (1994). New Designs for Teaching and Learning. Jossey-Bass Publishers: San Francisco.

Surveys important trends in education, including critical thinking, cooperative learning, and portfolio assessment, and shows how they can be used in the classroom. Suggests concepts, techniques, and activities for use in all curriculum areas, and discusses how television, computers, and interactive telecommunication are transforming learning. 

Angelo, T. A., & Cross, K. P. (1993). Classroom assessment techniques: A handbook for college teachers (Second Ed.). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Classroom assessment encourages faculty to "become more systematic and sensitive observers of learning as it takes place every day in their classrooms." This valuable resource introduces readers to an especially exciting way to becoming a more reflective and effective classroom instructor. Further, it offers detailed descriptions of fifty classroom assessment techniques and illustrates nicely their use with brief case studies of how faculty from across the disciplines have employed these techniques. In addition to providing faculty with feedback of their instructional effectiveness, classroom assessment engages students actively in the reflective process of monitoring their comprehension and retention of subject matter. Topics include: “Getting Started in Classroom Assessment,” “Classroom Assessment Techniques,” and “Building On What We Have Learned.” 

Bean, J. C. (1996). Engaging ideas: The professor's guide to integrating writing, critical thinking, and active learning in the classroom. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

The author, well known for his work in writing across the curriculum, has succeeded in creating "a pragmatic nuts-and bolts guide that will help teachers from any discipline design interest-provoking writing and critical thinking activities and incorporate them smoothly into their disciplinary courses." While the text clearly devotes greater explicit attention to the writing process than to either critical thinking or active learning, other works cited in this bibliography better address these two important topic areas. Three chapters in this volume examine "Understanding Connections Between Thinking and Writing," two chapters explore "Designing Problem-based Assignments," and three chapters discuss "Reading, Commenting On, and Grading Student Writing." The six remaining chapters describe various aspects of "Coaching Students as Learners, Thinkers, and Writers." 

Bligh, Donald A. (2000).What’s the use of lectures?  Jossey-Bass Publishers, ISBN: 0787951625

Donald Bligh provides a comprehensive guide to the uses and possible abuses of the lecture method. Supported by copious research, Bligh offers a wealth of practical suggestions for making lectures more engaging and effective."--Stephen Brookfield, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minnesota 

Topics include taking notes, using handouts, practicing different formats and styles, obtaining feedback, overcoming difficulties, evaluating the lecture, and testing alternative methods when lecturing is not adequate. 

"This very readable book will be a source of great insight for people who teach. Donald Bligh has spent more time and energy than anyone else in coming to terms with a task that bothers many teachers and trainers. He offers a well-structured perspective on one of the core activities in higher education. His research is impeccable and his conclusions are immensely practical."--Alex Main, founding coordinator of Academic Staff Development for the British Universities, Murdoch University 

Border, L. & Van Note Chism, N. (eds.) (June 1992). Teaching for Diversity, Jossey-Bass Publishers, ISBN: 1555427634

A challenge for American classrooms approaching the 21st Century is creating an environment conducive to preparing students to be culturally competent citizens. Teaching for Diversity addresses this challenge. This book provides insights on a range of instructional issues associated with teaching for diversity. Learning styles, instructional designs, institutional culture, equitable classroom participation across gender, race, and ethnicity, and strengthening cultural competence among faculty and staff are some of the topics covered. The book is primarily directed at the classroom and teacher/student interactions.  

A paradigm shift is required if university campuses are going to meet the challenges of teaching for diversity. The more homogeneous the campus, the more daunting is the task. How do we create opportunities for our students to build competence in relating to others in cross-cultural situations when the presence of diverse cultures is such a small portion of the population of our community?  Ultimately, the university has to be stirred to action to change the climate--the "organizational culture." Only this will make it possible to meet the challenges of diversity and competence building so necessary for today's citizens. 

Brookfield, S. D., & Preskill, S. (1999). Discussion as a way of teaching: Tools and techniques for democratic classrooms. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Stephen Brookfield is the author of three other award winning Jossey-Bass texts of interest to many faculty readers of this bibliography [i.e, Developing critical thinkers: Challenging adults to explore alternative ways of thinking and acting (1987); The skillful teacher: On technique, trust, and responsiveness in the classroom (1990); On becoming a critically reflective teacher (1995)]. This engaging text, his most recent work done in collaboration with a long-time friend and colleague, offers a compelling look at how discussion helps learning and enlivens classrooms (Chapter 2). As the title promises, subsequent chapters then offer similarly comprehensive practical suggestions for preparing for and starting discussions (Chapters 3 & 4), keeping discussions going (Chapters 5 & 6), understanding and acknowledging cultural and gender differences (Chapters 7 & 8), and keeping students' voices and teachers' voices in balance (Chapters 9 & 10). Novice and experienced active learning practitioners will both find fresh and helpful guidance in this recently published text. 

Campbell, William E. & Karl A. Smith. (1997). New Paradigms for College Teaching. Interaction Book Company: Edina, Minnesota.

This book is meant for faculty searching for new ways to teach, for alternatives to the traditional lecture method we all learned in graduate school. Chapters on a variety of ways teachers can connect with their students and help them learn are included. Each of these methodologies is described exhaustively elsewhere, in books and journals and at conferences. This book brings brief discussions of them together in one accessible volume, with references to sources where readers can learn more. Chapters include: The Renewal of Community in Higher Education, The Use of Stories in Teaching, The Braiding of Classroom Voices, Cooperative and Active Learning, Writing-Across-The-Curriculum, Student Management Teams, Teaching With Stories, Knowledge Maps, Information Technology and Learning Communities.  

Campus Compact (2000). Introduction to Service-Learning Toolkit: Readings and Resources for Faculty, Providence, Rhode Island.

This toolkit provides information for faculty and staff of all experience levels about the fundamental service learning issues surrounding teaching and learning.  The essays and bibliographies in this toolkit address the issues of: definitions and principles, learning theory, pedagogy, community partnerships, reflective teaching methodology, academic culture, student development, assessment, model programs, redesigning curriculum, and promotion and tenure guidelines. 

Caron, Barbara (1999). Service Matters: The Engaged Campus. Providence, Rhode Island: Campus Compact.

This document provides an update on the state of student service and service learning at the Campus Compact member campuses.  It includes The President’s Fourth of July Declaration on the Civic Responsibility of Higher Education, which states that higher education has a responsibility to develop the next generation of active citizens, and campuses must be good citizens in their own community. 

Eison, J. A., & Bonwell, C. C. (1993, January). Recent works on using active learning strategies across the disciplines. Unpublished manuscript. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 364 135).

This bibliography lists 275 articles and monographs, mostly published in the 1980s, that address the use of active learning teaching methods at the postsecondary education level. Items are selected to produce a large illustrative sampling of published materials that can introduce the literature of active learning to faculty. Articles typically explore practical aspects of this methodology and classroom strategies. The bibliographic references are divided by discipline reflecting the use of specific active learning approaches such as audio-visual aids, case studies, class discussion, computers, debates, field work, games/simulations, groups, library assignments, performance, surveys, visual imaging, or writing assignments. Specific sections are categorized by the following disciplines: business, humanities, sciences, and social sciences. This work was the precursor to the more extensive listing now posted bibliography on the Center's web page at http://www.cte.usf.edu/bibs/active_learn/intro.html/  

Fink, Dee L. (2003). Creating Significant Learning Experiences: An Integrated Approach to Designing College Courses.  San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishing, ISBN: 0-7879-6055-1

Dee Fink poses a fundamental question for all teachers: "How can I create courses that will provide significant learning experiences for my students?" In the process of addressing this question, he urges teachers to shift from a content-centered approach to a learning-centered approach that asks "What kinds of learning will be significant for students, and how can I create a course that will result in that kind of learning?"  

Fink provides several conceptual and procedural tools that will be invaluable for all teachers when designing instruction. He takes important existing ideas in the literature on college teaching (active learning, educative assessment), adds some new ideas (a taxonomy of significant learning, the concept of a teaching strategy), and shows how to systematically combine these in a way that results in powerful learning experiences for students. Acquiring a deeper understanding of the design process will empower teachers to creatively design courses for significant learning in a variety of situations. (Publisher’s Notes)

Hatfield, Susan Rickey ed. (1995). The Seven Principles in Action: Improving Undergraduate Education.  Anker Publishing
The first seven chapters of the book focus on the seven principles, one at a time. Each chapter has a short "overview" essay on the principle under review and its ramifications, followed by descriptive examples of programs from institutions that have successfully implemented the principle. The examples include information on how to contact individuals at the specific institutions about their programs and a list of resources in print for further consideration. The seven principles state that Good Practice: 1) encourages student-faculty contact; 2) encourages cooperation among students; 3) encourages active learning; 4) gives prompt feedback; 5) emphasizes time on task; 6) communicates high expectations; and 7) respects diverse talents and ways of learning. The chapters devoted to the implementation of the seven principles are concise but specific and enormously enriched by the inclusion of the addresses, phone numbers, and fax numbers of contact persons. 

But as valuable as these chapters are, the book gains even more weight from the four concluding chapters that describe assessment inventories for faculty, administrators, and students who want to improve their educational experiences. "Indicators of Educational Effectiveness," by James Reynolds, suggests that the seven principles can be used "to distinguish quality learning environments," and he lists specific "indicators" of each of the seven principles.

Finally, Martin Nemko, author of How to Get an Ivy League Education at a State University, adds the final chapters, "How to Choose a College: For College-Bound Students & Families" and "How to Test-Drive A College." These chapters encourage the high-school graduate to choose a college based in part on its adherence to the seven principles. Giving parents and students specifically probing questions to research and to ask of college recruiters is perhaps the quickest way to bring more accountability to the pursuit of quality undergraduate education. (Terry Nienhuis, Western Carolina University)

Hativa, N. (2000). Teaching for effective learning in higher education. Dordrecht, Holland: Kluwer Academic Publishers. 

Research on teaching in higher education shows that students who are well taught learn more than students who are poorly taught, and there are some teaching behaviors and strategies that are consistently associated with good teaching. This book identifies these strategies and presents them within a theoretical framework that explains how they promote students' active and meaningful learning. By presenting teaching as a logical structure of interconnected behaviors whose contribution to student learning is based on theory and research, the book promotes teachers' pedagogical knowledge and their perception of teaching as scholarly, intellectual work.
The book addresses college and university teachers of all subject domains, faculty developers, and researchers of teaching in higher education. It provides extensive practical advice that is based on the vast experience of the author as an instructional consultant and on research on accomplished teachers, taken from the domains of education, psychology, and speech communication. The practical ideas are separated from the theoretical part in a way that makes them easily identifiable.
The book also puts forth the voice of the students through authentic comments that they wrote in thousands of instructor-evaluation forms that the author collected over many years.                                                




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-Thomas Watson, 17th century English, non-conformist, Puritan preacher