Six Themes to Promote Student Learning

Tyler Griffin, Ph.D., associate professor at Brigham Young University, recently shared his “six A’s” for promoting deep and lasting learning in courses in a Faculty Focus article. The big-picture themes include: Adjustments, or making minor tweaks to a course to improve student learning; Audience, or getting to know more about students and why they’re taking the course; Applicability, or showing how material learned in class is useful for students’ lives and future careers; Adaptability, or finding dynamic ways to deliver information to students to remedy cognitive overload; Accentuation, or changing the frequency or potency of information presented in class to promote long lasting learning; and Assessments, or creating relevant and increasingly complex assignments to gauge student learning.

“Students are going to learn a lot better and retain learning a lot longer if they’re working on whole tasks,” Griffin said in the Faculty Focus story. “Make them feel like there’s purpose and meaning to the class, rather than just jumping through the hoops of learning what you want them to learn so they can regurgitate it on the test.”