Instructional Strategies

Teaching requires striking a balance between efficient content delivery and optimizing student learning. Ideally, students will understand, retain, and be able to apply their knowledge to new situations. Current and ongoing research on learning and cognition invites us to think strategically about incorporating opportunities for interaction, moving away from a lecture-only approach.

In this Section

Active Learning Strategies

Explore a range of techniques that help students actively engage in the material. Research shows these methods are more effective for student learning, retention, and equity in the classroom. This section describes three techniques to get you started.

Hybrid & Online Learning

Many Cornell instructors are realizing the potential benefits of using online teaching tools, not only for online teaching, but also to enhance in-person or hybrid courses. Online learning tools can provide more flexibility for both students and instructors, offering a variety of ways for students to engage with course material and demonstrate their learning.

Metacognitive Strategies

There are techniques to help students develop an awareness of their thinking processes as they learn. These techniques help students focus with clearer intention, reflect on their existing knowledge versus information they still need to learn, recognize errors in their thinking, and develop practices for more effective learning.

Classroom Environment Strategies

Created through the intersection of the social, emotional, and instructional elements of your class, your classroom environment can affect student motivation to learn and ultimately their performance. In this section, we describe strategies for building a warm and inclusive classroom in which students can excel.