“The combination of active methodologies and lectures, rather than only lectures”, Third Prize in the Universidad Europea Teaching Innovation Awards

The awards recognize innovation in the classroom and the work of professors who adapt their teaching methods to the requirements of the EHEA

The project The combination of active methodologies and lectures, rather than only lectures”, directed by Pablo César García-Sánchez, won the Third Prize in the eighth Universidad Europea Teaching Innovation Awards, held on July 22.

There is increasing acceptance of the use of active teaching methods in the classroom, rather than lectures, when teaching the theoretical components of a discipline. Despite this, there are few studies in the literature measuring the impact of this innovation on student performance in a subject.

This study, with the participation of María Blanco Morales and Leticia Martínez Caro, measures the impact on academic performance of using active methodologies in combination with lectures, compared to lectures only, in the TEF I subject of the Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Therapy, and studies how the results could be applied to teaching practice.

The theoretical components of the subject were taught in different ways in two consecutive academic years. In 2014-15 they were taught through lectures only, and in 2015-16 lectures were combined with various active methodologies, creating spaces in the classroom for students to experiment and collaborate in learning in a more participatory manner.

The students in both years were assessed, using identical tools, in two clinical cases and a multiple choice exam, both designed to measure the specific and general competencies listed in the subject guide. The introduction of active dynamics produced an improvement of around 0.6 to 1.6 points, reflected in a half-point higher final score in the subject. Meanwhile, using active methodologies reduced theory teaching time by 30% from one year to the next, opening the door to using that time to improve the acquisition of the subject’s practical skills.