Welcome to 2023!

There were so many useful tips in our Active Learning advent calendar. Here’s a reminder – see how many you can try in 2023!

Day 1 – 100 Ideas for Active Learning

Let’s get the party started with the Active Learning Network’s online book, ‘100 Ideas for Active Learning’. Lots of inspiration for getting students engaged!

Day 2 – Flipped learning

Flipped learning is a type of active learning where students undertake work (e.g. readings) before lectures or seminars. You may already be doing this, but if not see this handout from flippedlearning.org for more info.

Day 3 – Reflective writing

Reflective writing helps students think about what they have learnt. The Library has produced this guide to reflective writing that you can share with your students.

Day 4 – Mentimeter for active learning

Mentimeter is a great tool for active learning, providing a quick way to get students thinking during a lecture with in-class polling. See our article on Mentimeter for Active Learning.

Day 5 – Gamification

Gamification of Learning on Linkedin Learning explores using game design in learning, through case studies and theory, and has advice on how to implement gamification into lessons.

Day 6 – Peer instruction

Peer instruction is a technique that can be used in a lecture to get students to discuss and engage with a question. This short video on peer instruction gives a good introduction.

Day 7 – Seppo

Planning a trip in Semester 2 and want to make it more engaging? Use Seppo, a game-based learning tool for lessons at real life geographical locations or for distance learning. Check out this example of touring the UWE campus and use pin code G7EBFB to access it.

Day 8 – Authentic assessment

Authentic Assessment Top Trumps 50 ideas for getting students to produce assessable artefacts with real-world relevance.

Day 9 – Adobe Express

Adobe Express is a free, easy tool for creating posters and flyers of a professional standard. Use it for formative assessments where students need to visually demonstrate knowledge.

Day 10 – Multiple choice questions

Multiple choice questions are a great way to make a passive activity such as watching a video more active. But there is an art to writing them. Read how to write good multiple choice questions here.

Day 11 – Problem-based learning

Problem-Based Learning (PBL) gets students working collaboratively to solve real world challenges, by asking them to come up with an informed, well-constructed answer.

Day 12 – Mind maps

MindMup is a free online mind-mapping tool. Students can create a map and download it in various formats, including as an image or PDF, even without setting up an account, so it is useful for quick in-class exercises.

Day 13 – H5P

H5P can be used to add interaction to a YouTube video, like this example on active learning. You can sign up with H5P for free. There are lots of other types of interactive content you can make as well!

Day 14 – Jigsaw method

The Jigsaw Method is a cooperative learning technique where each student researches a piece of the puzzle and conveys that information to others in their group.

Day 15 – MS Forms

You can use automatically marked quizzes in Microsoft Forms to help students check their knowledge.

Day 16 – Xerte

Xerte can be used for quick self-assessment activities which can be embedded in your Blackboard site or provided via a link. Talk to your Digital Learning team if you want to know more.

Day 17 – Active reading

It’s not what you do, it’s the way that you do it – make reading active with the following tips from University of Sussex.

Day 18 – Object-based learning

Have you heard of object-based learning? Handling objects can engage students’ curiosity and provide a talking point. See this article for more details.

Day 19 – Padlet

Get students to do collaborative research using Padlet. There are different types of board – this Timeline one is good for exploring the history of your subject.

Day 20 – Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams can also be used to set formative quizzes or assessments for students as part of a flipped learning approach. There are so many other functions Teams can serve.

Day 21 – Branching scenarios

In Seppo, or Twine, you can set different task and activity paths based on responses to questions given to learners. These are known as branching paths and add a good amount of replayability to your active learning tasks- through explicit choices. Find out more on the FETLIU blog.

Day 22 – Whiteboard

Want a creative way for students to show off digitally what they prepared before a lesson? Microsoft Whiteboard in Teams can be presented as a collaborative space where students can write, draw or share images.

Day 23 – New Mentimeter slides

We know Mentimeter is great for active learning, but did you know about these new slide types? Try some out here: https://go.uwe.ac.uk/xmasvote and see the results at https://go.uwe.ac.uk/xmasresults UWE staff – you can get it for your own use from the Shared Templates store.

Day 24 – Joint the Active Learning Network

The Active Learning Network encourages sharing of good practice around making learning engaging. For the UWE group, see our Intranet page. To look for a group in your own organisation, or set one up, go to the Active Learning Network website.


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