Thursday, July 28, 2011

Re: Research on Active Learning in Higher Education

Some blog followers might be interested in a discussion-list post “Re: Research on Active Learning in Higher Education” [Hake (2011)].

The abstract reads:

ABSTRACT: Carolyn Hamblin of the POD list wrote (paraphrasing):

“I'm looking for research on active learning in higher education. I've found a lot in secondary ed but not much in higher ed.”

A Google search for [“higher education” “active learning”] (with the quotes but without the angle brackets) yielded 1.42 million hits on 28 July 2011 14:38-0700. After careful study of each of these hits ;-), I've selected the 20 best and referenced them in this post.

To access the complete 19 kB post please click on .

Richard Hake, Emeritus Professor of Physics, Indiana University
Honorary Member, Curmudgeon Lodge of Deventer, The Netherlands
President, PEdants for Definitive Academic References which
Recognize the Invention of the Internet (PEDARRII)

“Physics educators have led the way in developing and using objective tests to compare student learning gains in different types of courses, and chemists, biologists, and others are now developing similar instruments. These tests provide convincing evidence that students assimilate new knowledge more effectively in courses including active, inquiry-based, and collaborative learning, assisted by information technology, than in traditional courses.”
Wood & Gentile (2003)

“There is substantial evidence that scientific teaching in the sciences, i.e., teaching that employs instructional strategies that encourage undergraduates to become actively engaged in their own learning, can produce levels of understanding, retention and transfer of knowledge that are greater than those resulting from traditional lecture/lab classes. But widespread acceptance by university faculty of new pedagogies and curricular materials still lies in the future. . . . . We conclude that widespread promotion and adoption of the elements of scientific teaching by university science departments could have profound effects in promoting a scientifically literate society and a reinvigorated research enterprise.”
Robert DeHaan (2005)

REFERENCES [URL’s shortened by and accessed on 28 July 2011.]
DeHaan, R.L. 2005. “The Impending Revolution in Undergraduate Science Education,” Journal of Science Education and Technology 14(2): 253-269; the abstract and first page are online at

Hake, R.R. 2011. “Re: Research on Active Learning in Higher Education,” online on the OPEN! AERA-L archives at Post of 28 Jul 2011 17:04:29 -0700 to AERA-L and Net-Gold. The abstract and link to the complete post are being transmitted to various discussion lists.

Wood, W.B., & J.M. Gentile. 2003. “Teaching in a research context,” Science 302: 1510; 28 November; an abstract is online at

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