In line with the updated guidelines from our University partners, the College Board has approved a change to the fee structure for all our programs, effective January 2024 onwards. In line with the updated guidelines from our University partners, the College Board has approved a change to the fee structure for all our programs, effective January 2024 onwards.

Teacher-centered Vs Student-centered Learning: Which is better?

Student-centered learning and teacher-centered learning are two contrasting approaches to education. But which one is better? The truth is, there’s no single answer. Both methods have their strengths and weaknesses, and the best approach often depends on the subject matter, the age of the students, and the learning goals. Let’s learn about them in detail. 

What is Teacher-centered learning?

Teacher-centered learning, also known as the traditional method, places the teacher at the forefront. The teacher delivers information through lectures, presentations, and direct instruction. Students absorb the knowledge and demonstrate their understanding through tests and assignments. This approach can be effective for introducing new concepts and ensuring everyone covers the basics.

However, teacher-centered learning can also have limitations. Passive learning can lead to disengagement, especially for students who learn best by doing. The focus on memorisation might not equip students with critical thinking or problem-solving skills needed in the real world.

Teacher-centered Learning: Pros & Cons

Pros:

  • Clear Structure: This approach provides a clear roadmap for learning, ensuring all students cover the essential content.
  • Efficient Delivery of Information: Teachers with strong subject-matter knowledge can effectively transmit large amounts of information in a short time.
  • Works Well for Certain Topics: Direct instruction can be quite effective for foundational knowledge or building basic skills.

Cons:

  • Limited Student Engagement: Passive listening can be tedious, especially for students who learn best by doing.
  • Discourages Critical Thinking: Students may focus on memorising facts rather than developing critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
  • Doesn’t Cater to Diverse Learning Styles: This method might not cater to students who learn best through visual aids, group work, or hands-on activities.

What is Student-centered learning?

Student-centered learning, on the other hand, flips the script. In this learning approach, students become more involved in their own learning. This can involve activities like group projects, discussions, debates, simulations, and independent research. The teacher acts as a facilitator, guiding students, providing resources, and fostering a safe space for exploration.

The benefits of student-centered learning are numerous. It fosters deeper understanding and engagement. Students who are actively involved in the learning process are more likely to retain information and develop critical thinking skills. Additionally, this approach encourages collaboration, communication, and self-directed learning, all essential skills for success in the 21st century.

Student-centered learning: Pros & Cons 

Pros:

  • Engaged Learning: Students are actively involved, which can boost motivation and knowledge retention.
  • Critical Thinking and Problem-Solving: Students learn to analyse information, solve problems, and think creatively.
  • Collaboration and Communication: Develops collaboration and communication skills through teamwork and discussions.
  • Catering to Diverse Learners: Allows students to learn in ways that suit their individual needs and styles.

Cons:

  • Classroom Management: It can be more challenging to manage a classroom with a lot of student activity.
  • Requires Preparation: Teachers need to invest time in planning engaging activities and differentiated instruction.
  • Not Suitable for All Topics: Some foundational knowledge might still require direct instruction.

Teacher-centered Vs. Student-centered learning: Which is better?

Teacher-centric learning is commonly employed and can be notably more impactful than student-centric learning approaches in certain situations. While teacher-centered instruction, often referred to as the “sage on the stage” model, embodies a more conventional educational method, it remains suitable and effective in numerous contexts.

However, the most effective classrooms mostly use a blend of both approaches. Nowadays, many teachers aim to combine both teacher-centered and student-centered learning styles, sometimes within a single classroom, drawing from their instincts, research, and teaching experience. 

Teachers can start with a mini-lesson to introduce a concept and then have students work in groups on activities that allow them to explore it further.

Ultimately, the goal is to create a learning environment that caters to the individual needs of each student and fosters a love of learning that will stay with them throughout their lives.

When it comes to Master’s in Education degree, Online M.Ed programs prioritise connecting with fellow students through the essential learning portals integral to the online academic experience. 

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