Tutorial attendance improves

‘Moros y cristianos’, Cuban restaurant, Bogotá, Colombia

 

The figures are in – tutorial attendance has improved, especially towards the end of semester. The Contemporary Latin(o) Americas subject, while always rating high in end of semester student feedback surveys, has had a perennial problem with tutorial attendance drop-off in the last few weeks. No matter how interesting the subject material, student attendance often dropped to 30 per cent by Week 11. By Week 12 only 20 per cent of students were attending lectures and by Week 13 barely any students attended class at all. A probable cause of the drop off is student stress and fatigue, but also tutorial design: there was simply not enough time devoted to student interaction and student-generated content. The flipped learning experiment seems to have paid dividends. I kept an informal record: Week 11 had 70% attendance, Week 12 had 65%, and the final week is a compulsory test. It’s too early to claim a definitive victory as half the lectures are delivered online, so students really need to attend tutorials to have any interaction, but the new system seems to be working. Attendance is  not compulsory in this subject – the challenge is to make it interesting so that students “want to attend” regularly.

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2 thoughts on “Tutorial attendance improves

  1. Very low attendance in the last few weeks of the semester is a common issue for many subjects. If flipped learning can improve the attendance rate, it’s excellent!
    From my teaching experience, I feel that making the content interesting is not enough. I have to create some class activities to engage students.

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