The Lively Discussion: Getting students to talk and learn

“Any discussion protocol is a game that you play in class, linked to your course aims,” says Burdick.

Using Film Noir as a backdrop for classroom techniques, Dakin Burdick, Director for the Center for Teaching Excellence at Endicott College in Massachusetts, advanced the conversation on classroom discussions at The Teaching Professor Conference June 2, 2012 in Washington, DC.

Burdick used the group of 84 professors in the room to model 4 of the more complex discussion protocols shared in his session:

  • Value Line
  • Affinity Map
  • Jigsaw
  • Creative Brainstorm
  • Each participant left with a guide to 20 discussion models that can be applied in any classroom. Burdick’s guide to discussion also included an online equivalent for each discussion protocol.

    Imagine a scenario in which a professor used one of the 20 during each class meeting to inspire conversation. Every class would be different and more opportunities to engage might inspire discussion.

    What are your thoughts?

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