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Learner-Centered Teaching: Five Key Changes to Practice

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  223 ratings  ·  33 reviews
Praise for Maryellen Weimer's Inspired College Teaching

"The thoughtfulness, personalization, and consideration Maryellen Weimer demonstrates in discussing the experience of faculty members, her ability to identify issues that are shared and solvable, and her suggestions and solutions to commonly experienced stressors and difficulties in college teaching are major stren
Hardcover, 287 pages
Published February 26th 2013 by Jossey-Bass (first published July 8th 2002)
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Apr 23, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first edition of Maryellen Weimer's Learner-Centered Teaching: Five Key Changes to Practice is a classic. Her second edition expands and improves on the first: my copy doesn't just have underlining and comments, but also notes on front and back endpapers to remind myself of what I'd like to think about in my next iteration of my courses.

Weimer says the label learner-centered teaching "keeps us focused on what this way of teaching is about" (p. vii). Such teaching is not easy – it requires bo
Dec 12, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: university instructors
Recommended to Jessi by: UVU Faculty Center
Shelves: teaching-related
This was an incredibly thought-provoking book for instructors in higher education. I think that most of us begin teaching in the traditional lecture style. As we mature as instructors, there is a tendency to venture out of that traditional framework in order to explore techniques that are impactful in the classroom. Weimer presents an alternative organizational framework for college courses that empowers students to control their learning experiences. She highlights five critical areas of change ...more
Mike Thicke
Apr 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
I picked up Learner-Centered Teaching because I've been thinking about ways to redesign my introductory history and philosophy of science course to be less lecture-heavy. It has certainly helped my thought process in that regard, but it has also made me question nearly everything about how I teach. That makes this a really dangerous book!

Probably most college-level instructors or professors, myself included, have heard of "learner-centered" or "problem-based" approaches to teaching. On a limited
Jan 07, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: education
This book is for college faculty, providing a format to make their teaching "learner-centered". I work as a campus minister, teaching weekly bible studies and preaching, so I read this book figuring there would be some lessons to learn to make my teaching better. As I read, I did see ways these techniques could translate into my ministry, so I am glad I read this book.

Mohammad Keyhani
Feb 08, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Teachers and professors
I just really wish all my professors would read this book.
Jul 23, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book for those who teach. It focuses on higher ed, but we used it in a library course, and I think K-12 teachers could gain a lot from it, too.
Chandra Powers Wersch
A lot to take in, but very helpful and thought provoking. This book definitely deserves to be read more than once. I really liked the charts/matrices she included near the end and her advice for faculty members to continue taking a class outside their content area in order to put themselves in the shoes of students and re-experience what it is like to be a learner again (since the content we teach becomes so familiar to us that we forget what it's like to ACTUALLY LEARN IT.) Teachers should be m ...more
Allison Mozingo
Jun 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The second edition of Learner-Centered Teaching is absolutely wonderful and revolutionary. Although the book is written for an audience of college teachers (whether community college or university), many of the activities and ideas she discusses can and SHOULD be applied to middle schools and high schools. Many high school courses have the same format as your typical college course and a shift in focus for teachers would create the more well-rounded students college teachers are longing for.
Jan 09, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lots of resources, ideas, and research. It may be that I read it while tediously waiting during jury duty or after a more compelling book that spoke to me more, but I found I was skimming a lot. Perhaps I will find that I return to the book again and again, but for now it's not for me. I also think that some of this has to do with my teaching situation more than a problem with the book. ...more
Rochella Bickford
A must-read for teachers who need to redefine their pedagogy in order to engage students more effectively. Very practical and research-based.
Stephanie Snyder
May 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: education
Good information about helping students become better learners through learner-centered teaching rather than the traditional teacher-centered learning.
May 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Excellent book. I would highly recommended it to any teacher. It is full of great ideas that will make you a better teacher. It is well researched and documented.
Raulito Trinidad
I find a Learner-centered teaching book as a reference to read and study for my subject.
Dec 02, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I really wanted to like this book, but I bought with the feeling that I wasn't going to get much out of it. I've read a number of books and papers about teaching and learning, and so from reading the index it seemed like there was little that was new to me. But I gave it shot --- maybe I would end up liking it. Even if it just re-hashed things I already thought I knew it might provide new insights. Unfortunately, my suspicious were right --- it was not a worthwhile book for me to read. Pretty qu ...more
Curtis Newbold
Jan 25, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting insight into learner-centered teaching. Great book for starting conversations about pedagogy and the challenges of implementing grades, assessment, learning, power dynamics, and so forth in the classroom.

The book is now over a decade old, but timely enough to make the conversation relevant. However, Weimer's ideas are not as groundbreaking as she claims them to be and her passive-aggressive attack on sharing content with students is sometimes heavy-handed.

Overall, though, I found mys
Elizabeth Schlatter
Great book, lots of food for thought. Read this as part of a book group at work. I sort of wish the format was different though, as in maybe 1/2 theory and research and 1/2 like a workbook with examples of applying this sort of pedagogy in class. As it is now, the examples tend to be buried in the chapters. So I have to go back and find the examples that I marked. Also, while I appreciate how thoroughly the author researched the benefits of Learner-Centered Teaching, her arguments became a bit r ...more
Jun 10, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Radical feminism has never appealed to me. Obviously, Weimer is attempting to use education as a vehicle for social change and not for educating. There is little to no evidence that non-guided learning works. She even admits that her classroom gets chaotic. I would argue that her technique does not create a good learning environment for students. While teachers should work to reach all learners and structure their courses to achieve that end, her technique will only reach one type of student. Th ...more
Dec 02, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a really good book for those who teach in higher education. There has always been the traditional approach to teaching, imparting knowledge to students who have to turn around and regurgitate it back. This author suggests the sharing of responsibility with learners which I found refreshing and I will try to implement this strategy in my classes next semester. The only thing lacking is more concrete examples of how to do this.
Celtic Goddess
Mar 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was assigned for my Teaching of Psychology PhD level course. As educators, we need to find better ways to encourage critical thinking and creative processes in our students. I found the concepts presented by Ms. Weimer to be an interesting, thought provoking approach to address the changes needed in our educational system.
Jul 28, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tangible-library
My first graduate course textbook for "Effective College Teaching" at ECU with Dr. Maria Clay.

The active learning strategies are broken down along with the steps to implement them to meet goals and positively impact students. The most impressive aspect of the book is the understanding of why we do what we do.

Selmoore Codfish
I recommend this for all teachers. The book provides insight into how students learn and how instructors can improve it by focusing on having students grow in responsibility in their own learning. The book is written with college education in mind, but should be informative to teachers at other levels too.
Dec 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
So far, so good. As the main teacher and director of a busy herbal medicine school, I am always looking for ways to improve my teaching, and also to make the class more interactive and less lecture. This book seems to have some of the answers.

I will give a better review when I finish. And an even more accurate review after a few months of teaching using these ideas.
Catie Carlson
Apr 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-related
There are few nonfiction books I would read again, but this is one of them. Great ideas to make a classroom more engaging with the added bonus of comforting you in knowing how awful it is to try. There are so many great ideas within this piece I would be happy to read it again to see what I missed and could still try to make a better learning environment for students.
Apr 15, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Tyler
A good book with several important ideas. We read it as part of U of L's part-time faculty learning community, and worked through many of the ideas in our courses this semester. An important book to read for anyone who has ever taught or will ever teach at a college. ...more
Dec 19, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was required reading for a college class I took this past semester. I found it extremely though-provoking and interesting. The ideas offered in this book I believe are practical but also radical in much of the educational world.
May 17, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very clear and thorough book on teaching. The author does an excellent job presenting her points through her personal experience and research. Lots of good principles and theories to consider and plenty of examples to get instructors thinking about their courses.
George Woodbury
Jul 29, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another book inspired by Redesigning Community Colleges. Great ideas for student-centered learning, covering research and practical applications. Love the really open syllabus idea where students can decide how they will accumulate points. Another worthy pre-semester read.
Aron Heleodoro
Jan 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really good review of an interesting method of teaching.
Has practical advises as well as a compedium of the literature. Her writing style is very fluid and easily accessible.
Mills College Library
378.12 W4229 2013
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Editor-in-chief of Teaching Professor since 1987. Penn State Professor Emeritus of Teaching and Learning.
Received Penn State’s Milton S. Eisenhower award for distinguished teaching in 2005.

Past Director of the Instructional Development Program at Pennsylvania State University for ten years. Past Associate Director at the National Center on Postsecondary Teaching, Learning, and Assessment; a U. S

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