n South African Journal of Higher Education - Active learning in Physiology practical work

Volume 19, Issue 5
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



This article describes and evaluates two different teaching-learning approaches during pulmonary practicals in physiology. The one experimental group of students did the practical according to the conventional method used in the past, where students were more passive in the teaching-learning environment. The teaching-learning strategy for the other experimental group was designed to stimulate more active learning in students. A quantitative study by means of a questionnaire, as well as a qualitative study by means of interviews, determined the students' responses on five different variables that contained the key concepts of the objectives of this research. A statistical analysis of the results indicates that when students are actively involved in the teaching-learning process, they enhance their ability to use cognitive skills such as interpretation, judgement and problem-solving skills. The results also underline the importance of an active approach towards practical work and emphasis ideas such as group work, co-operation, full participation, small group discussions and the scientific work method.

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