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What Is Student Engagement in Learning?

Student Learning

What Is Student Engagement in Learning?

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Pete Burkholder recently published an interesting article in this newsletter questioning the widespread push in higher education for “engaging” student activities. He first adopts Jose Eos Trinidad et al.’s (2020) definition of engagement as “enjoyment” and then notes that student enjoyment does not automatically mean student learning. Students might enjoy an activity but not learn much from it. Thus, he cautions readers not to develop student activities on the assumption that because students enjoy them they must therefore be learning.

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3 Comments

  1. Pete Burkholder November 30, 2020

    John — Thanks for so ably extending the points raised in my own column. “Engagement” certainly isn’t a straightforward issue and it deserves greater precision and attention, as you indicate.

  2. qin.li@utah.edu December 1, 2020

    Thanks for this great article and links to related resources. As a learning experience designer, it has always been my question to ask myself: what we really want students to get out of instruction; What we hold valuable with what the faculty and students hold valuable? How do we get everybody on board. this is something that is worth digging and digging deep.

  3. qin.li@utah.edu December 1, 2020

    Sorry for the typo. I meant my second question is:
    “Is what we hold valuable align with what the faculty and students hold valuable?

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