MERLOT Pedagogy Portal Visit Main MERLOT

Active Learning

Active Learning is anything that students do in a classroom other than merely passively listening to an instructor's lecture. Research shows that active learning improves students' understanding and retention of information and can be very effective in developing higher order cognitive skills such as problem solving and critical thinking.  The sites below will help you create and plan active learning activities in your course.

For all resources on Active Learning, click here.




The Active Learning Site with VARK Learning Styles Inventory

Neil D. Fleming and Charles Bonwell, Educational Consultants

This site supports the scholarship of teaching by providing research-based resources designed to help faculty use active learning successfully in college and university classrooms.

Active Learning on the Web

Bernie Dodge, San Diego State University

This site provides a brief, introductory view of using active learning in the classroom.

Scenes from a Classroom: Making Active Learning Work

Center for Teaching and Learning, University of Minnesota

This site is a tutorial/workshop that provides suggestions for adding active learning activities to your class.  There are also some scenarios of problems encountered with student resistance to them.

Active Learning for the College Classroom

Chemistry Department, California State University - Los Angeles

This site provides some active learning activities that can be applied to any course.

Active Learning with Powerpoint

Paul Baepler, University of Minnesota.

This is an online tutorial that suggests ways faculty can use PowerPoint as a medium to support active learning. The tutorial includes sections on active lecturing, active learning strategies and their delivery via PowerPoint, creating and using effective handouts, using PowerPoint to play in-class games, and using PowerPoint for formative assessment.