What is innately different about CBCs that makes them more effective?
The most crucial differentiator for an effective Cohort Based Course is the teaching philosophy that powers it, Learner Centred Teaching.
What is Learner Centred Teaching? 👩🏽🎓
Learner Centred Teaching (LCT) is a format of teaching and learning that puts the learner at the centre. At its core, LCT assumes that the process of learning is owned by the learner themselves. The teacher is considered to be one resource amongst many to facilitate their learning.
Conventional pedagogy is largely teacher-centred, theory-focused and lecture-based. 👩🏾🏫
This system is a relic of the past. In the pre-printing press age, the oral tradition was the most efficient way to transfer expertise, art and culture. The classroom was the only avenue for learners to access it. The internet 🌎 has now brought video, audio and text content right to our fingertips.
So what are the needs of students today, and consequently, the role of the teacher?
Role of the Teacher 👩🏾🏫
Learners need a safe space to learn, explore ideas, try things, make mistakes and have support when they face obstacles.
The main task of the teacher is to construct this learning environment. ⚒️
To this end, educators across the world are actively moving from teacher centred lecturing to task based teaching.
Performing tasks helps the students approach the topic from their perspective, rather than following an order pre-set by the teacher or textbook authors. Thus, students have greater freedom and control over how they learn.
Further, there are endless interventions and feedback loops 🔄 to support the learner when they hit roadblocks.
However, LCT does not imply a student can do whatever they want. The teacher, leveraging their years of domain expertise, carefully designs a syllabus. They curate / create content setting broad boundaries within which a student is free to explore their own learning path.
Another task for the teacher is providing mentorship and support to students. This can be done via a community 🤝🏽of open and approachable peers and mentors with varied experiences who can widen and enhance the learning experience.
In the next entry we will expand on the learning paths and interventions we’ve discovered from our implementation of LCT in our CBCs. Stay tuned. 🙂