Interactive and Collaborative Learning Environments

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Redstar.gif Introduction

It is important for teachers to be aware of the benefits of interactive and collaborative instructional design methodologies. These methodologies can be utilized effectively in learner-centered environments, especially in subject areas that involve teaching students real-life skills, authentic assessment techniques and hands-on learning activities. Interactive and collaborative learning environments can be very beneficial to student learning for the following reasons:

  • Students are more inclined to be interested and active in the learning process.
  • Students can develop a sense of community among peers.
  • Students are given an opportunity to construct their own knowledge base.
  • Students can develop multiple learning capabilities better.


This course will introduce you to the following three ways to implement interactive and collaborative learning environments:

Interactive Learn and Do

Interactive learn and do environments are beneficial for students who are studying subjects that involve assessment activities that are based on knowledge and skills learned in the classroom. Learning and doing are combined into the learning process which allows for ongoing assessment of student knowledge and skills in the classroom. These types of environments work well when students are working alone, in pairs or in groups of more than two. Understanding the concepts of interactive learning is a prerequisite to understanding paired and collaborative learning.

Paired Collaboration

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Paired learning is useful for when students are not ready to collaborate in larger groups or have not yet experienced collaborative learning. Students will feel less overwhelmed by the collaborative process when they can work in pairs and it will prepare them for collaboration in larger groups.

Group Collaboration

Group learning is best for students who are ready to work in groups of three or more students. Group collaboration works well for authentic assessment activities that provide students with real-life problems.


Redstar.gifLearning Objectives for these lessons

Prerequisites

Students taking this course can be ...

  • Teachers of high school and college grade levels.
  • Teachers who have not studied or practiced interactive and collaborative learning in their classrooms.
  • Teachers who want to learn more about interactive and collaborative learning.
  • Teachers who have a desire to improve student learning in their classes by implementing interactive and collaborative learning.


Understanding ...

After these lessons, you will understand ...

  • How interactive and collaborative learning can enhance a learner-centered environment and improve student learning.
  • When to use interactive and collaborative learning methodologies in the classroom.


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Performances ...

After these lessons you will be able to ...

  • Design interactive and collaborative learning environments for your classroom.
  • Design a lesson which utilizes interactive learning activities that allow students to apply new knowledge and skills in the learning environment while learning.
  • Design a lesson which utilizes paired collaboration methodologies in the learning environment.
  • Design a lesson which utilizes group collaboration for authentic activities in the learning environment.



Redstar.gif Lesson One: Interactive Learn and Do

Redstar.gif Lesson Two: Paired Collaboration

Redstar.gif Lesson Three: Group Collaboration

Redstar.gif Resources and References