Communication skills

Facilitating Classroom Discussion: A Guide

A photograph of three students sitting together around a desk with one student raising a hand.

One of the most effective ways to promote learning with students is through a well-facilitated class discussion. In interacting with the instructor and their peers, students learn how to develop their point of view while comparing what they think to what others think. Students can learn how to communicate with others, even in the presence of disagreement. Instructors can make this kind of learning possible by planning classroom discussions ahead of time, building an inclusive environment, setting clear expectations, and asking the right questions.

Creating Experiential Learning Experiences in the Classroom

A photo of a board game.

In addition to community engagement and problem and project-based learning, experiential learning can occur via a variety of in-class activities. These activities allow students to attain, practice, and demonstrate “real-world” knowledge within a classroom or school setting to cultivate the analytical and communication skills necessary for solving problems that students will confront after leaving school. Participating in authentic learning activities allow students to practice and cultivate skills and knowledge that they will need as professionals once they graduate. In authentic learning environments, instructors step in to coach at critical moments.

What is Experiential Learning?

A photo of four people in a laboratory looking at plant specimens in jars.

 Experiential learning is often referred to as “learning by doing.” It is a series of learning activities that comprise both concrete experiences and guided reflections. Students are provided the opportunity to continually distill and integrate knowledge acquired from class with relevant situations and problems.