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Challenge-Based Active Learning

How it works

The principles of challenge-based active learning

Learning focusses around a series of challenges, with each challenge addressing a concept.

Each challenge builds upon understanding gained from previous challenges.

Students spend more time on challenges they find difficult and less time on those they find easy.

Class time consists of discussion between students, and optionally a short explanation or demonstration by the teacher.

List of challenges

The nature of the challenge

Unlike traditional flipped-classroom models, study focusses on the challenge, not the reading. This gives students clear motivation to complete assigned tasks.

With relevant resources included by the teacher, students learn valuable self-study habits in a structured environment.

In contrast to traditional homework, the student can immediately check their answer, keeping them in the flow when it’s wrong and providing a motivational win when it’s right.

A sample challenge

The nature of the class

The teacher walks into the classroom knowing the progress of the class and likely questions, resulting in efficient class-preparation and student learning.

Students are paired based on their performance, enabling personalised instruction as students ask each other questions, discuss difficult concepts and learn how to explain ideas.

Although much of the class is devoted to valuable pair-discussion, the teacher can still choose to deliver a targeted explanation to address a common issue or provide a motivating outline of a new topic.

The nature of the class

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