This blog post is in response to an article titled “Death of a Traditional Lecture” by Faculty Focus. The article explores the declining effectiveness of the traditional lecture-style teaching format and the need for more student-centered and digital modalities of content delivery. https://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/course-design-ideas/death-of-a-traditional-lecture/
The traditional format of a faculty member standing in front of a classroom using visual enhancement tools such as whiteboards and PowerPoint has been on life support for quite some time. This format has been the norm for many years, but it is no longer the most effective way to engage and educate students. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for more digital and student-centered approaches to education, which is leading to the death of traditional lecture-style teaching.
One of the main advantages of digital learning experiences is the ability to provide students with access to more diverse and specialized resources. Course designers can now incorporate online lectures, virtual content, and 3D models into their course design to provide students with a more interactive and engaging learning experience. Additionally, digital modalities provide a more student-centered approach that fosters curiosity and exploration. Students can explore models and examples at their own pace and based on their own interests, which is not possible in a traditional lecture-style format.
Furthermore, digital modalities provide opportunities for real-life application, which is critical in many fields of study. For instance, in a Laboratory Technician Program, students can attend online courses to learn safety, policy, and theory of techniques and then attend campus to apply techniques and practices to improve skills. This allows students to apply what they learn in a safe environment before they enter the workforce.
Despite the numerous benefits of digital modalities, there is still a stigma associated with online learning. Many people have a misperception that courses utilizing online learning are not as good or effective. However, numerous studies suggest that alternative learning models are just as good, if not better, than traditional methods. For example, Ardissone et al. (2020) found that postgraduate outcomes were equivalent regardless of delivery format.
The shift towards digital learning experiences and innovative design approaches is not just a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is a response to the changing needs of students and the workforce. The workforce is becoming more digital, and employers are looking for graduates who have experience with digital tools and technology. As such, it is critical that educators embrace digital modalities and innovative design approaches to prepare students for the future.
In conclusion, the death of traditional lecture-style teaching is the result of the need for more digital and student-centered approaches to education. Course designers need to explore alternative learning approaches and incorporate digital modalities of content delivery into their course design to provide students with interactive and engaging learning experiences. By embracing digital modalities and innovative design approaches, institutions can prepare students for the future and provide them with a more effective and accessible education.
Ardissone, A.N., Drew, J.C., Triplett, E.W. (2020). Online and in-person delivery of upper division lecture courses in undergraduate life sciences degree programs leads to equivalent post-graduate degree outcomes. Journal for STEM Education Research. 3: 403-412. https://doi.org/10.1007/s41979-020-00043-x