Catalyzing Active Learning Strategies in Evolution


In this study, we implemented several Evidence-Based Teaching Methods (EBTMs) in an evolutionary biology class at the CAU. We introduced interactive lecturing to be able to shift learning from rote memorization to a deeper conceptual understanding, and improve student engagement. Research shows that interactive classes can significantly improve students’ science attitude, interest, and learning outcomes. Overall, we transformed teaching from a lecture-based, passive learning format, to a format that used active learning, and engaged the students through class activities. For this, we introduced student-teacher and peer-discussion with clickers, structured large- and small-group activities, group discussions, and student presentations. Along with collecting data from class videos, we also collected data from the professor/teachers and the students to learn about their experience with engagement in an active learning class.