Interactive Lecture


Similar to the pedagogical approach of lecture, interactive lecture or lecture with discussion integrates both lecture and discussion into a class session. This method also includes the use of questioning and cueing throughout the lecture.

Practical Applications

Several approaches have been suggested to seamlessly integrate discussions into a lecture (Brookfield & Preskill, 2005, as cited by Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, 2014).

  1. End each lecture segment with 1-2 questions that remain unanswered. Ask students to work together in small groups to provide answers to these questions.
  2. Insert “Buzz Sessions” into lecture segments. In small groups, ask students to answer focused questions about their understanding of the lecture material.
  3. Use video clips or case studies or examples from current events within the lecture to ignite short periods of class discussion.
  4. Implement “Think-Pair-Share” between lecture segments and then engage the entire class in full discussion before proceeding to the next lecture topic. (In a think-pair-share, students first ponder a question and prepare an answer individually, then pair with a partner to share and exchange ideas, and third, one member of the pair shares their collective answer with the class.)

Recommended Resources

  • Break it Up! Strategies to “break up” the lecture – Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire  Eight suggestions for interspersing active learning strategies into a lecture to enhance student engagement.

Related Evaluation and Assessment Resources

  • How To Prepare Better Multiple-Choice Test Items: Guidelines For University Faculty – Burton, S. J., Sudweeks, R.R., Merrill, P. F., & Wood, B. (1991:
    This guide outlines the construction of multiple-choice items, overviews the advantages and disadvantages, discusses when multiple-choice items should be used, and offers recommendations for measuring higher-level objectives with multiple choice items.
  • Best Practices for Designing and Grading Exams – Mary Pioniek, Center for Research on Learning and Teaching, University of Michigan:
    This Occassional Paper overviews the science of developing valid and reliable exams, provides guidelines for developing and scoring essay items, and discusses normative and criterion grading systems.
  • Classroom Assessment Techniques. A Handbook For College Teachers by T.A. Angelo & K.P. Cross (1993)