An Inquiry-Driven Classroom: Letting the Students Lead the Way

Paul Bond (University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown)

I would like to present on a collaborative teaching relationship between a professor/educational technologist and an instructional librarian at separate institutions, the courses that have come out of it, and some of the outcomes we have seen.

This was a collaboration between an online instructor/librarian, in-class instructor and in-class students in an online/in-class hybrid environment. Digital technologies, including blogs, wikis, and Google Hangouts, were used to manage classes and collaboration, and the outputs of the courses included blogs, wikis, and digital timelines and videos.

The collaboration evolved over time to bring the students more and more to the front of the class, putting them in charge of class discussions as a way of making them take charge of their own learning. The instructors also envisioned the courses as collaborative research projects involving instructor and students. Therefore, the students were involved in determining the direction of the courses, the design of the assignments, and the content of the course reading lists. As an outcome of these collaborations, we have seen astonishing levels of student engagement, initiative and creativity.