Blog: Metacognition in Teaching: Using A “Rapid Responses to Learning” Process to Reflect on and Improve Pedagogy

By Susan Cox, Kate Jongbloed, and Charlyn Black

Have you ever finished teaching a class and wondered what students “took away” in terms of their learning? And whether your pedagogic approach was effective? 

These questions were the stimulus for our paper in Teaching & Learning Inquiry. Our article describes the use of a weekly “rapid responses (RR) to learning” process in the context of teaching a graduate course on research methods. We found that the RR process provides benefits to both instructors and learners. The process generates formative feedback that enables us to monitor student learning, identify trouble spots, and assess student engagement and the classroom climate. All of which means that we have the insights we need from students to adjust our teaching approaches and enhance their learning. From a student perspective, the RR process encourages self-reflexive engagement in their own learning at the end of each class. And, the RR process provides us as instructors with the motivation and understanding to critically reflect on our pedagogic strategies and document what is least and most effective. This can be very helpful for new and more seasoned instructors who need to craft a statement of teaching philosophy or populate their CVs with meaningful entries attesting to their attention to the quality of their teaching. 

In short, we suggest that the RR process is both quick and easy to implement and relevant to many types of courses. It provides instructors with valuable information for course improvement, both in real time and over multiple iterations of a course. 

Why not give it a try?

Read the full TLI article here.

Photo credit to Eunice Lituañas: https://unsplash.com/photos/bpxgyD4YYt4.

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