When Students Teach, Everyone Learns: The Evolution of Teaching Strategies Used by Preceptors in General Chemistry
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractIn general chemistry classes nationwide, peer-led team learning (PLTL) has proven to be an effective teaching method. The general chemistry class in this study, Chemical Thinking at the University of Arizona, uses a modified form of PLTL where preceptor-led sessions supplement lectures to help facilitate student learning. Yet aside from the individual experiences of students and preceptors, it is not well known how preceptors interact with students to help them learn in this model. To investigate this, we video-recorded preceptors interacting with students during weekly review sessions. We characterized many of the teaching strategies used by preceptors and identified an evolution in the use of these strategies as a preceptor gained experience. This evolution supports current research in learning progressions, which suggests that conceptual understanding develops over time. It is important for preceptors to possess a strong conceptual understanding of chemistry as well as teaching strategies specific to the course content, and our research indicates that both of these develop through experience. The results of this study are being used to implement a training program aimed at accelerating the development of teaching skills for new preceptors.
Degree ProgramHonors College