Research into how we learn has opened the door for utilizing cognitive theory to facilitate better student learning. But that's easier said than done. Many books about cognitive theory introduce radical but impractical theories, failing to make the connection to the classroom. In Small Teaching, James Lang presents a strategy for improving student learning with a series of modest but powerful changes that make a big difference—many of which can be put into practice in a single class period. These strategies are designed to bridge the chasm between primary research and the classroom environment in a way that can be implemented by any faculty in any discipline, and even integrated into pre-existing teaching techniques. Learn, for example:
- How does one become good at retrieving knowledge from memory?
- How does making predictions now help us learn in the future?
- How do instructors instill fixed or growth mindsets in their students?
Each chapter introduces a basic concept in cognitive theory, explains when and how it should be employed, and provides firm examples of how the intervention has been or could be used in a variety of disciplines. Small teaching techniques include brief classroom or online learning activities, one-time interventions, and small modifications in course design or communication with students.
Keywords: Small Teaching: Everyday Lessons from the Science of Learning; James Lang; evidence-based teaching; cognitive theory; cognitive research; cognitive research for teachers; cognitive research in the classroom; research-based teaching techniques; cognitive teaching examples; building better learning environments; multidisciplinary teaching methods; classroom activities; improving student outcomes; neuroscience in teaching; how students learn; psychology in teaching; creating a positive classroom; research on teaching; brain-based learning