Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Want them to learn? Eliminate Mass Lecture Sections!!!!

Great article in the NYT today regarding how MIT (yes, that MIT) has done away with the large lecture section of basic physics and replaced it with smaller class sizes that utilize hands-on learning and a lot of small assignments. This article makes ME feel great because it reinforces a lot of my own beliefs about how to teach and what's wrong with trying to teach 440 people marketing by standing up and talking! My favorite quote in the article is:
“Just as you can’t become a marathon runner by watching marathons on TV,” Professor Mazur said, “likewise for science, you have to go through the thought processes of doing science and not just watch your instructor do it.”
Awesome metaphor!! I agree!!!

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