Make the most of your own and students' time by encouraging active learning (through collaboration) and improving retention of material, and teach the skill of identifying the key insights from a text.


Step 1: 

Assign groups of 3 students different sets of material (e.g. an article, multiple articles, an article and a video etc.).

A template spreadsheet you can use to assign the material and pair the groups is available here.

Step 2: 

Tell each group to create a quiz covering the key questions for their material. A simple solution is to use your institution's Google/Microsoft Forms, but other quiz tools will do as well.

Step 3: 

Next class session, the groups swap material and answer the quiz made by another group. It is important to emphasise to students that there should be a time gap between them reading the text(s) and answering the quiz - this should not be done simultaneously as that would take away much of the "active recall" aspect. It must be clear to students that this is a learning rather than a grading exercise.


Advanced tips

Explain clearly to students why they are doing this exercise. You could emphasise that they will not only develop transferable cognitive skills (e.g. recognising key insights) but also learn more deeply and better remember material.

Next time you are teaching the course, you can reuse/consolidate student reading questions from last term and pass them to students for the weeks where they are not doing the above exercise.

For guidance on quiz-making, see this nugget on creating a quiz and this nugget on continuous feedback.

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