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Effective Lecturing Strategies

The word ‘lecture’ implies applying a teacher centered approach in terms of a large or small class presentation. Lecturing has been mostly described as hindering active learning and many strategies have been proposed to make it as actively engaging as possible. An effective lecture is mainly an interactive one, where “the instructor frequently becomes a ‘facilitator’ or ‘coach’, and more often than not, has to modify the lecture content to allow for discussion and other active learning techniques” (Steinhart & Snell, 1999, p. 37). Therefore, an effective lecture embodies active engagement of the students and encourages the students to attentively participate in the discussions. Some of the strategies to facilitate effective lecturing are as follows:

  • Implement a participation grade for the class and specify that answering or posing questions are important indicators of their participation.
  • Break the lecture into smaller sections and check for students’ understanding at the end of each section. You can do this in different ways,
    • Ask general questions about the section
    • Place the students into groups and ask them to do an activity or answer a specific question about the section and share their discussion with the rest of the class
    • Develop short quizzes using Kahoot, Mentimeter, or another online teaching tool and give these to the class
  • Be persuasive in your lecture
    • Identify your audience’s interests and try to use arguments in your explanations that are appealing to them.
    • Develop a trusting learning environment so that students are more likely to accept your suggestions (Atkins, Brown, & Brown, 2002, p. 25).
  • Use different instructional delivery methods such as images, discussions, and group work
  • Provide the students with a set of the lecture notes and ask them to them to take short notes

Steinert, Y., & Snell, L.S. (2009). Interactive lecturing: Strategies for increasing   participation in large group presentation. Medical Teacher, 21(1), 37-42.

Atkins, M., & Brown, G. (2002). Effective teaching in higher education. Routledge.

Download this one-pager to take effective lecturing tips with you to class.