19 Jun Playful Teaching Removes Barriers to Learning
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Lisa Forbes, Ph.D, LPC, NCC
Clinical Assistant Professor
University of Colorado Denver
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Response: The most common mode of learning in tertiary education is lecture-based learning despite the knowledge that more active, engaged, and flexible approaches to teaching may better support the learning process. This study aimed to understand graduate students’ experiences with a playful pedagogy as an alternative approach to learning.
MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?
Response: The main findings suggest that students value a playful pedagogy as an uncommon and unexpected mode of education. Students reported that play ignited a valuable learning process that removed barriers to learning such as stress, anxiety, and fear while simultaneously establishing a warm classroom community. It seemed as though once barriers to learning had reduced and connection was created, students were more vulnerably engaged in the learning process.
MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: There seems to be a dominant social narrative communicating that play is for children, therefore, play is often excluded in adulthood and in higher education because it’s considered trivial and a waste of time. The findings from this study can encourage people to question the societal narratives about play. There’s a plethora of research on the benefits and importance of play over the lifespan; so, we should question why play is often separated out of work, learning, and adult life.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?
Response: Future research could provide additional empirical evidence for the use of a playful pedagogy in higher education. Researchers could explore the different forms that play takes in a learning environment to provide guidance regarding how educators could utilize a playful approach. More research needs to examine the social scripts of play in adulthood as our values and beliefs precede action and behavior.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Response: Beyond higher education, it’s important to reconsider how we, as a society, value play in adulthood. If you consider the very aspects of life, work, relationships, and health that adults pursue (i.e., creativity, innovation, motivation, connection, engagement, joy, well-being, etc.), these aspects are more easily achieved if we are open to play.
THE PROCESS OF PLAYFUL LEARNING IN HIGHER EDUCATION: A PHENOMENOLOGICAL STUDY
University of Colorado Denver
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