Student Engagement

Sometimes my students seem happy to memorize test answers; how do I get them as excited about course content as I am?

I want to incorporate more active learning in my class, but I’m afraid my students will revolt. How can I get them on board?

With so much content to cover, how can I make time for student collaboration?

Student engagement in higher education is broadly defined as the degree to which students are connected to, interested in, or involved with their college experience. High levels of engagement, both inside and outside the classroom, are positively related to a number of impressive outcomes: cognitive, intellectual, moral, and ethical development; higher GPAs; increased student satisfaction; and higher levels of persistence.

Engagement in a class, whether online or face-to-face, involves the intentional creation of a learning environment that challenges students, fosters their curiosity, and motivates them to spend time and effort on their coursework.

This section includes a variety of ways to promote student engagement:

  • Ensuring Academic Rigor: Academic rigor plays an important role in student engagement, but finding the right balance between too easy and too hard can be challenging. Ensure that students are appropriately challenged with these strategies.
  • Creating Welcoming Communities: A sense of belonging has a positive impact on student learning and engagement. Discover strategies for establishing instructor presence and creating positive student interactions in a face-to-face or online course.
  • Motivating Students: Spark student interest and encourage students to engage more deeply in their learning with these strategies.
  • Promoting Collaboration: Learn more about the benefits of student collaboration as well as best practices for creating group and team-based assignments.
  • Adopting Active Learning Approaches: Looking to increase student engagement, improve students’ critical thinking skills, or increase overall participation? Explore active learning approaches like a flipped classroom, problem-based learning, or gamification.
  • Annotating the Syllabus: Prompting students to annotate the syllabus encourages close reading and deeper engagement.

Request Assistance

For help increasing student engagement and incorporating active learning into your courses, you may request assistance from the Center for Instructional Technology and Training.