Lectures Still Dominate Science and Math Teaching, Sometimes Hampering Student Success

Lectures Still Dominate Science and Math Teaching 1

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In a recent faculty survey, 63 percent of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics professors said they used "extensive lecturing" in all or most of their classes, an approach that may help explain the high rate of attrition among students who major in STEM fields.

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In a recent faculty survey, 63 percent of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics professors said they used "extensive lecturing" in all or most of their classes, an approach that may help explain the high rate of attrition among students who major in STEM fields.

Lecturing remains the most common method for teaching undergraduates in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, known as the STEM disciplines. Although other forms of instruction have made inroads, the continuing reliance on this pedagogical tool may be stymieing efforts to increase the number of graduates in those programs.

"We have a really good idea about what doesn't work: lecturing students without engaging them, having labs not linked with lectures," says James S.