Inquiry-based learning seems to be a buzz word in the curriculum overhaul movement of today. I think that most teachers can explain the overall idea of inquiry-based as a method which replaces memorization with a learning experience that engages students to learn by questioning. The question is how many educators can use their present knowledge-base to transfer their existing coursework into a bone fide inquiry-based learning experience? I am not certain that I can do it.
My Instructional Technology university courses don’t usually include much paper and pencil testing. Most of them involve hands-on learning with projects that apply to the students’ professional lives and pursuits. This hopefully makes their work more relevant and they are definitely problem-based, but I am not certain that I am posing the problems in a way that would be considered Inquiry-based.
I am tired of hearing and talking platitudes about changing our educational system from a memorization-based learning experience to a student-engaging learning environment which challenges students to answer problems and convert information and data into useful knowledge. Is there a system for this conversion? Is there a checklist to better identify an inquiry-based system? Is there a premise for the questioning system that needs to be used to optimize this system?
It is difficult for a university professor to acknowledge his ignorance in an area of study where he is supposed to be proficient, but I don’t think that I understand the formalized world of inquiry-based/project-based/challenge-based learning. I know that it is more than doing projects. There is a level of cognitive development that needs to be nurtured to optimize the learning experience for students AND teachers.
I may have a better understanding of Inquiry-based learning than I am admitting here, but I just wanted you to know that I am beginning a pursuit to better understand and implement inquiry-based learning in my courses.
What do you know about inquiry-based/project-based/challenge-based learning? What resources can you suggest? Are you using this format? What are you doing?
Thanks for your thoughts and support.
Related articles by Zemanta
- Reflections on Learning (weber.k12.ut.us)
- Science Comes to Life for Middle Schoolers in Wisconsin with New “Interactive Science” Curriculum (prweb.com)
- Questioning Current Thinking And Approaches (slideshare.net)
Leave a comment and keep the discussion going.