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Journal of the Music & Entertainment Industry Educators Association

Volume 3, Number 1 (2003)

Are Your Learners Learning? A Critical Look at How and What We Teach

Barry R. Hill

Lebanon Valley College of Pennsylvania


Course design in today’s university system tends to follow a long-standing tradition of organizing topics relative to the applicable field; encouraging discussion about these topics in class; presenting facts for students to memorize; and ultimately testing students on their ability to do so. While the students’ resultant grades represent an assessment of their ability to retain information, they do not assess how well they will be able to use it to solve actual workplace issues post-graduation. This is why a radical re-thinking of teaching methodology in higher education is necessary. Students require context for, and a means of practical application of, the information their universities present to them. By design, people are only truly able to apply knowledge when they can link what they have learned to how they can use it in real-life. Thus, in addition to presenting materials in the traditional sense, course design should allow for opportunities to practice the relevant lessons, maintaining an overarching focus on what students should ultimately be able to do upon completion of the course.

Keywords: instructional design, learning science, course design, higher education, teaching methodology

Hill, Barry R. “Are Your Learners Learning? A Critical Look at How and What We Teach." Journal of the Music and Entertainment Industry Educators Association 3, no. 1 (2003): 85-92. https://doi.org/10.25101/3.5

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