Contemporary Issues in Education Research (CIER)

Authentic Learning Experience: Subtle But Useful Ways To Provide It In Practice

Chandana Watagodakumbura


Authentic learning is conceptualised as anindividualised experience learners undergo fulfilling their uniquepsychological as well as neurological needs. It provides a deep, more lasting experienceand ideally assessed through generic attributes that are related to individuallearners intrinsic characteristics, spanning throughout the life. Question-based lecture delivery, as authoridentified, is a promising methodology to engage learner in an authenticlearning experience. By forming thelecture as a series of questions, it essentially has a dialectic approach toteaching. Further this methodologyprovides a good pace for concept delivery allowing learners to engage inconstructing meaning. Additionally, itallows aligning teaching to assessment tasks more appropriately, improving thereliability of assessment. Another practicethat helps authentic learning, as highlighted in this paper, is onlyelaborating the most important concepts or material related to a study area,within the limited time available, and thereby, in the assessment as well. This contrasts from the notion that teacherhas to mention every single fact in the study area in front of the learners,possibly directing learners to strategic approaches to learning. The time factor in relation to assessmentcomponents is also an important issue, as some learners may be disadvantaged iftime is not allocated with careful thought. The significance of generalised, orhigher-order, learning in an authentic learning framework is presented, as theknowledge gained through this way is likely to last longer in learners memoryand at the same time, more useful to them in a generic way, or in day to daysituations. Such practices alsoinherently motivate learners to engage in a deep learning process. We furtheremphasise on motivating students by relating any study area or material to moregeneric processes we find in daily lives so that students get the notion ofwhat they learn will be useful to them in future in a generic way, but notnecessarily in a specific career. Use of practical work only in support of enhancingunderstanding of an abstract theory presented, but not otherwise, is also highlightedin promoting authentic learning experience.


Authentic Learning; Higher-Order Learning; Question-Based Lecture Delivery; Learner Motivation; Neurological and Psychological Learner Characteristics

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