A workshop activity to demonstrate that approaches to learning are influenced by the teaching and learning environment

D. Kember, Yin Ping Leung, C. McNaught

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


It is important to demonstrate to those taking courses for new teachers that approaches to learning have a relational nature - that they are influenced by the teaching and learning context. This article describes a workshop activity, based on the Revised Study Process Questionnaire. Workshop participants recorded their approaches to learning in two contexts: how they currently studied as postgraduate students, and how they studied in their most disliked undergraduate course. Analysis of the results from this activity indicates that approaches to learning are markedly influenced by the teaching and learning environment. This provides a graphic demonstration to workshop participants of the importance of their teaching, as it will have a strong influence on the quality of learning of their students. The data from the activity give quantitative evidence of the relational nature of approaches to learning. Further, there appears to be a discipline effect operating with the nature of the typical teaching and learning environment in the arts, humanities and social sciences being more conducive to students cultivating a deep approach to learning. © 2008 SAGE Publications.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-56
Number of pages14
JournalActive Learning in Higher Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Approaches to learning
  • Higher education
  • Revised Study Process Questionnaire
  • Teaching and learning environment
  • Workshop activity for teaching assistants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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