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Innovative Teaching: Engaging Adult Learners with Active Learning

Discover the power of active participation in adult learning, encouraging teamwork and collaboration among students.

3,730 enrolled on this course

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Innovative Teaching: Engaging Adult Learners with Active Learning

3,730 enrolled on this course

  • 4 weeks

  • 3 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Intermediate level

Find out more about how to join this course

Explore the power of teaching and how interactive learning can aid the classroom

Active learning is the leading innovative teaching approach in education today. It encourages teachers to foster a more student-centred, interactive and participatory approach to learning.

On this course, you’ll develop a deep understanding of active learning – effectively promoting learning by engaging learners interactively and encouraging teamwork and collaboration among students.

You’ll challenge assumptions about teaching, learning with a community of educators to freely discuss the challenges of teaching and share successful practices, plans, and effective teaching strategies.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 10 seconds Hi, my name is Monica Fedeli and I’m Professor of Teaching and Learning at University of Padua. I’m here in front of Galileo Galilei podium, where he was teaching astronomy and physics. From the high of this podium Galileo was teaching and lecturing like a sage on the stage, pontificating. Now, this tradition that helped made our University one of the best in the world is changing, like most of the think that belong to the past. This means putting podiums aside, teaching in an interactive way, looking learners in their eyes and supporting them during the group work, sharing with them different perspectives and working together, encouraging them to critically reflect on the topic of the day.

Skip to 1 minute and 7 seconds This approach is called active learning, and this is the key for promoting better learning experience for learners and institutions. Active learning is the process of engaging learners and the lesson they are talking, moving, doing, and creating together to have powerful learning. We practice what we teach in this program by modeling active learning for you as the learners, so you can learn how to teach this way.

Skip to 1 minute and 45 seconds We want you to understand Active Learning through experiencing it directly. It means learning about Four Foundations of

Skip to 1 minute and 52 seconds active learning: the power of active lecture and the use of small groups in the class, the role of technology in facilitating participation among students, The significance of ongoing feedback and assessment with students, and probably most significantly, is the power a positive student-teacher relationships in facilitating learning.

Skip to 2 minutes and 26 seconds So, transform you’re teaching, you will transform your learners. Be the guide on the side, and not the sage on the stage. Come join us in this course, we together can experience active learning.


  • Week 1

    Develop an Awareness about Teaching and Learning

    • Welcome to this learning community

      Get to know your educators and the topics that will be covered in this course. Then, introduce yourself to the other learners.

    • New trends in teaching and learning

      This short article presents several trends in teaching and learning related to active learning.

    • Engaging in a critically reflective practice

      This section introduces critical reflection, its importance and relationship to teaching and learning, and the steps to be engaged in a critically reflective practice.

    • What is your philosophy of teaching and learning?

      This activity will help you define your teaching philosophy.

    • Taking the Teaching Perspective Inventory (TPI)

      What is the TPI and how will it help you become more aware of your teaching?

    • Week 1 Wrap-up

      This activity aims to wrap-up what you have learned and shared this week!

  • Week 2

    Fostering Active Learning

    • Planning for Active Learning

      This section defines active learning, identifies challenges with traditional pedagogy such as lectures, and helps instructors plan for incorporating active learning into their educational repertoire.

    • Delivering interactive lectures

      Learn how you can make you lecture more engaging through interactive strategies.

    • Incorporating Active Learning into your teaching

      This activity provides a guide to engaging learners through active learning strategies, which includes reflective practice, information seeking, analysis, and synthesis, group inquiry, games and simulations, and the arts.

    • Week 2 Wrap-up

      In this section you will find the wrap-up activities for our second week.

  • Week 3

    Designing an Innovative Course and Planning a Lesson

    • Designing a course

      Learn how to design a course by following the principles of learner-centered teaching: get involved in the discussion and participate in every class activity.

    • Planning a lesson

      Learn the basics of course design and planning.

    • Week 3 Wrap-up

      What have you learned this week? Let's synthesize and share.

  • Week 4

    Innovative use of Feedback and Assessment for Learning

    • Giving and Receiving Feedback

      This activity will promote reflection and give practical examples on how to give affective feedback and how to promote feedback process among learners.

    • Assessing for Learning

      This activity will focus on practices and methods of assessing learning during and at the end of the course

    • Wrap-up week 4

      This activity aims to wrap-up what you learn and share during this week!

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Reflect on how and why you teach (philosophically, practically) - the bases for a critically reflective teaching practice.
  • Collaborate with a community of educators that have a desire to develop a more innovative approach to teaching
  • Develop a deep understanding of active learning - effectively promoting learning by using a: student-centered approach to teaching, engaging students interactively, and encouraging teamwork and collaboration among students.
  • Explore how to foster effective teacher-student relationships that promote learning.
  • Produce a plan (short and long term) for improving teaching in the classroom.
  • Improve the understanding of the effective assessment, evaluation and feedback in the classroom.
  • Investigate on teaching and learning to assess the impact of active learning in the classroom.

Who is the course for?

This course is for a variety of audiences who teach adults in either formal (higher education, training in business and industry) or nonformal educational settings and have an interest in innovating and improving their teaching practice.

This would include faculty in higher education, trainers/directors of training working in business and industry, public and private school teachers working with high school students, and educators that teach in cultural institutions (eg., libraries, museums, parks, zoos).

Who will you learn with?

Monica Fedeli Ph.D currently Professor in Teaching and Learning Methods and Organisational Development at University of Padova. Her research focus is Teaching in Higher Education

Professor Emeritus of Lifelong Learning & Adult Education from Penn State University. Presently work in Italy at University of Padova and other universities on innovative teaching and learning.

I am a professor of adult learning, leadership, and organization development at the University of Georgia. We transform learners so they can transform their world. Here's to your learning and change!

Who developed the course?

University of Padova

The University of Padova is one of Europe’s oldest and most prestigious seats of learning; it aims to provide its students with both professional training and a solid cultural background.

University of Georgia

Chartered by the state of Georgia in 1785, the University of Georgia is the birthplace of public higher education in America — launching our nation’s great tradition of world-class public education.

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Ways to learn

Choose the best way to learn for you!

Subscribe & save

$349.99 for one year

Automatically renews

Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Tests to boost your learning
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Buy this course

$104/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Tests to boost your learning
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Limited access


Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 16 Jul 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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