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    Inquiry Based Teaching

    · Inquiry is a pedagogical method that combines hands on activities and student-centered discussions.

    · Concepts are discovered by the students, not given to them.

    · Students are responsible for the learning.

    · Through a step-by-step process, students refine their ideas and eliminate extraneous ideas.

    · Keys to inquiry’s success:

    o There must be a good rapport between students and instructors.

    o Begin with the familiar and move towards the unfamiliar.

    o Incorporate the scientific method as often as possible.

    o Include a lot of hands on activities.

    o Start asking questions and encouraging student discussion the first day of class.

    o Ask only one question at a time and be open to all responses.

    · Inquiry concepts:

    o Good cause and effect subjects.

    o Good structure and function subjects.

    o Comparing and contrasting concepts.

    · Advantages of Inquiry:

    o Can lead to a deeper understanding of concepts.

    o Students will develop critical thinking and observation skills.

    o Can lead students to understanding the limitations of scientific knowledge.

    o Forces students to apply knowledge to new situations.

    o Forces students to evaluate all information, old and new.

    o Science is not accepted purely as fact.


    Table 2 from "Inquiry in the Classroom" in BioScience Vol 40 Num 11 pp 843

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