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Leveling Up Your Learning Activities
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Leveling Up Your Learning Activities

Instructional designers often talk about ways to get at higher-order thinking. For many teachers, it can be a challenge to accomplish this in a class where the content is primarily learning facts or concepts. Suppose you are teaching medical terminology. You are mostly teaching vocabulary and pronunciation.

By the nature of WHAT you are teaching, you can easily hit Bloom’s three lowest levels.  But how can you level up in a way that makes your course more than rote memorization? How can you help your students get to learning that involves analyzing, evaluating, and creating?

One way is to consider activities that involve metacognition. Use the learner’s ability to think about their own learning.  For example:

Analyzing:

  • Make a list that identifies what things you’ve already learned that will help you on your upcoming exam.
  • Analyze why you like and dislike some of the content in your textbook.

Evaluating:

  • From a list of different learning strategies for medical terms, decide which ones work best for you. Write a paragraph explaining your choices.
  • Write a scenario about what might happen to a medical assistant who forgot some medical terms.

Creating:

  • Create a log of the terms that are most difficult for you. Participate in a class discussion to learn what other students find difficult. Summarize the discussion in a few sentences.
  • Write an action plan that answers the question: How would you teach the next chapter to the class?

The WIDS software supports a performance-based learning and assessment design model. Read more in Hitting the Mark with Quality Course Design to learn how WIDS can help you answer the who, what, when, how, and why in course design. 

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