Teacher Coaching Programme Workshop #1: Learning-Centered Teaching

Oct 2021

Colleagues from the University of Geneva together with Sustainable Caucasus hold a second regional workshop on teaching-learning practice improvement to respond to the growing demand for qualified teaching in Disaster Risk Management (DRM) and hazard mapping (DRM-HM) and to contribute to capacity building for instructors in higher education institutions in Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia within the project Strengthening the Climate Adaptation Capacities in the South Caucasus: Enhancing regional cooperative action for the benefit of the Caucasus mountain region (SCAC), financially supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).
On the 20th of October, a first virtual webinar on learning-centered teaching took place with the participation of higher education institution representatives from the countries of the Caucasus region. 
Learning-centered teaching implies that decisions about curriculum and course design are made with specific reference to the type of learning that is desired, and strategies are selected because they are the most likely to promote that type of learning. This approach of teaching focuses on the learners and their development rather than on the transmission of content; it addresses the balance of power in teaching and learning, moves toward learners actively constructing their own knowledge, and puts the responsibility for learning on the learners.
Professor Jörg Balsiger outlined the importance of encouragement of students to reflect on what they are learning and how they are learning and introduced participants to the central tool of this approach that is Bloom as well as SOLO Taxonomy, a hierarchical framework for cognition and learning objectives that can be used for various purposes, including designing assessments, evaluating the complexity of assignments, simplifying a task to help personalize learning, or planning project-based learning. 
Participants were given the possibility to recognize and assess the different types of learning, got familiar with  Bloom and SOLO taxonomy approach to define learning outcomes and evaluate a learning unit from the perspective of learning-centered teaching.