Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Does the Quality of a Teacher’s Presentation Affect How Much Students Learn?

One study suggests that the answer is no. From the Chronicle of Higher Education:

Logic would suggest that lecturing to students in a clear, fluid style while making frequent eye contact would engage students and aid in their learning. At the very least, many people would assume, that technique would be more effective than hunching over a podium, reading from notes, and barely pausing to look up.

But that may not always be the case, according to a study published last month in the Psychonomic Bulletin & Review.

Students who watched a lecture delivered in the clear and fluid style, which is described in a report on the study as "fluent," were about twice as likely as those who watched the haltingly delivered, "disfluent" one to believe that they would remember the material they had just learned.

But both groups actually remembered about the same amount, with the students who had watched the disfluent lecture more accurately predicting how well they recalled the material.

Of course, this is just one study, but it does give pause.



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