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It's About Time: Exploring the Dose-Dependent Effects of Active Learning on Students of Different Social Personalities in an Upper-Level Biology Course

William C. Beckerson, Jennifer Anderson, Siddhesh Kulkarni, John Perch, and Deborah R. Yoder-Himes.

Journal of College Science Teaching, 2024

Abstract: Active learning is the new standard for teaching in higher education. As more faculty seek to expand their teaching practices by including active-learning activities that promote higher levels of learning, many are doing so in small doses by temporarily postponing trad- itional lectures in favor of group activities. While there is evidence demonstrating that active-learning practices can facilitate higher performance and information retention, our previous work showed that social personality differences can affect an individual’s perform- ance in group-oriented active-learning exercises. The results from this work indicated a pos- sible dose-dependent effect driving the correlations observed between performance and social personality compared with passive lectures. This study builds on our previous work by analyzing whether hosting comparatively few active-learning classes is leading to a dose- dependent effect on student performance by personality type in the active-learning setting. Our findings from this research demonstrate that social personality-based differences in per- formance on topics taught using active learning diminish with increased exposure to active learning. We also found that students of all personality types perform better on memorization-based questions than on higher-order questions in general, but their performance on higher-order thinking questions improved after participating in active learning.

Keywords: Pedagogy, IPIP, Introvert, Extrovert, Ambivert

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