EXPERTS:

  • Tuan Haji Yahya bin Samian
  • Dr. Sya Azmeela binti Shariff
  • Assoc. Prof. Dr. Morina binti Abdullah
  • Dr. Fauzan Khairi bin Che Harun
  • Dr. Hau Yuan Wen
  • Dr. Kamilah Radin binti Salim
  • Dr. Roslan Abdul-Rahim

*** WORK IN PROGRESS – PLEASE DO NOT CITE OR CIRCULATE WITHOUT PERMISSION

INTRODUCTION

Peer Instruction (PI) is an interactive teaching approach that focuses on student-centered learning. It was originally developed by Harvard Professor, Dr. Eric Mazur in the early 1990s. PI was originally used to improve students learning in introductory undergraduate physics classes at Harvard University. Nowadays, PI is used in various disciplines and institutions around the world.  PI is an active learning approach where students interact actively with the instructor and peers, whether inside or outside of classrooms. PI is another teaching method where the lecturer allows students to act by teaching and learning from each other. Having students work with each other is an effective methodology because it forces students to be active learners and to talk through course concepts in their own words. It is shown from research that PI enhances the student’s level of understanding. PI is used in various disciplines and institutions around the globe and most learning institution would agree that getting students to think critically is a primary goal in any university course. Professor Eric Mazur have given several talks and conducted workshops on PI in Europe, China, Japan and Korea. This shows that PI is effective and accepted by instructors and students of various culture and background. Therefore in 2013, UTM’s New Academia has listed PI as one of the key teaching and learning approaches that will be implemented throughout UTM courses. This initiative is to enrich Teaching & Learning (T&L) by changing the way of thinking and culture of learning, which have proven to be effective. This chapter provides a clear explanation about the process and procedure of implementing PI in classes. This chapter also provides a guideline to instructors who want to know more about PI.

 

Process and Procedure for Implementation

Using PI in Classrooms
One of the student-centered learning approaches is active learning.  Active learning enhances students’ development of critical and analytical thinking skills better than the traditional teacher-centered learning approach.  However, instructors are often reluctant to incorporate active learning activities in class. Some of the reasons include (i) not being able to cover the course syllabus on time; (ii) need extra preparation time for designing the questions; and (iii) not being able to implement active strategies in large classrooms. It is very important for instructors to make an effort in finding better ways to engage students in their learning process. PI may be new to many instructors and students at UTM.  Therefore, it is important for instructors to introduce students to PI at the beginning of the course by emphasizing the importance of being active in their learning.