Overall, movement toward LCT may not be as large a pedagogical change as one may be concerned about, and case study teaching is a type of LCT. The goals of the TL generally rely on Bloom's (1956) original taxonomy or Anderson and Krathwohl's (2001) meta cognitive revision – striving for evaluation and synthesis. Programs to improve critical thinking and active learning through writing (Bean 2011) also cite Bloom's taxonomy. So the TL and LCT approaches both have the desired educational cognitive learning theory goals of evaluation and synthesis.
Top-down instruction and hands-on methods of learning have been around for some time, emphasizing why, what, and then how. This pedagogy has included preparing students for learning, activating relevant knowledge, gaining students' attention, aids to understanding, promoting meaningful processing, and directing and maintaining attention (Steinberg 1991). In essence, when evaluation and synthesis are achieved, students know the why and the what, which leads to how. Knowing only how, including knowledge, comprehension, and application, does not necessarily lead to evaluation and synthesis.
If we want to increase student engagement, strengthen team skills, and use content for learning rather than covering content for recall, LCT offers pedagogical advantages over the TL.
We want students to examine, explore, study, associate, assess, appraise, review, comment, speculate, theorize, postulate, offer, imagine, assume, suggest, and hypothesize. Observing student success is extremely rewarding and encouraging, good reasons to create a learner-centered environment versus a teacher-dominated lecture.
1. Which of Maryellen Weimer's classic Learner Centered Teaching (2002), "Five Key Changes to Practice" do you feel is the most important and /or challenging? Why?
(a) The Balance of Power
(b) The Function of Content
(c) The Role of the Teacher
(d) The Responsibility for Learning
(e) Evaluation Purpose and Process
2. Given the importance of globalization, how would you approach adopting LCT even if it is counter to your student's cultural behavior?
3. What techniques and/or guidelines do you envision to change your role as a teacher, to "step out of the way" of learning and serve as a moderator, not a "sage on the stage" or lecturer?
4. Flow do you plan to introduce and orient your students to LCT? Do you have specific concerns about student response and their acceptance of responsibility for learning?