Teaching large groups
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Teaching Large Groups. Jenny Lorimer Tuesday 7 th June 2011. My Background. Professional background as a diagnostic radiographer Teach in School of Health and Emergency Professions Seconded teacher to LTI I teach some very large groups. Aim of the session. To stimulate dialogue

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Teaching Large Groups

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Teaching large groups

Teaching Large Groups

Jenny Lorimer

Tuesday 7th June 2011


My background

My Background

  • Professional background as a diagnostic radiographer

  • Teach in School of Health and Emergency Professions

  • Seconded teacher to LTI

  • I teach some very large groups


Aim of the session

Aim of the session

  • To stimulate dialogue

  • To consider some benefits and challenges

  • To propose some solutions

  • Traffic light cards


How big is a large group

How big is a large group?

  • 40

  • 80

  • Over 100

  • 500

  • So many students you don’t know their names


Some bad reasons for teaching large groups

Some bad reasons for teaching large groups

  • Effective use of teaching time

  • That’s the way we do it here

  • That’s what happened to me as a student

  • Meets the students expectations that we are going to tell them what they need to know

  • Any others?


Which of these is a good reason for teaching large groups

Which of these is a good reason for teaching large groups?

  • Stimulates the students’ desire to learn

  • To give a shared experience

  • To give information for future discussions and/or activities

  • To provide a focus for learning

  • For clarification


What do our students do in lectures

What do our students do in lectures?

  • Take notes

  • Make notes

  • Sit passively


What do our students really do

What do our students really do?

  • Look out the window

  • Look at other students

  • Worry that they don’t understand

  • Worry about other things – money, relationships etc

  • Listen to music

  • Text

  • Browse the internet


What we want our students to do

What we want our students to do

  • Want to learn

  • Need to learn

  • Learning by doing

  • Getting feedback

  • Making sense of what they have learnt


What do we do wrong

What do we do wrong?

  • Talk on and on...

  • Going too fast or too slow

  • Talking over the student’s heads

  • Not linking to what the student does know

  • Not explaining why they need to know


How do you get interaction is a large group

How do you get interaction is a large group?

  • Electronic voting systems

  • Post-it notes

  • Lining paper for questions

  • Questions as a group activity ‘buzz groups’


Which inappropriate behaviours are most challenging to manage

Which inappropriate behaviours are most challenging to manage?

  • Learners arriving late

  • Learners talking to each other

  • Getting their attention

  • Dealing with noise

  • Disruptive students


How can we develop our large group teaching

How can we develop our large group teaching?

  • Continuously get feedback from learners

  • Sit in on a colleague’s session

  • Peer observation

  • Use technology

  • Use variety


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