McNeil Guided Inquiry Activities Large Classes (2017 Archive)

Development of Guided-Inquiry Activities for a Large Class Environment

60 Minute Interactive Workshop


W. Stephen McNeil – UBC Okanagan
Tamara Freeman – UBC Okanagan


Attendees of this workshop will be directed through a process to create a guided-inquiry assignment, one designed to engage students through a scaffolded exploration of prior knowledge and analysis of information in order to generate a new core concept related to a specific topic.

At the end of his workshop, attendees of this workshop will

  • Understand the pedagogical principles, defining characteristics, and usual stages of a guided-inquiry activity
  • Develop an outline for a guided inquiry assignment to be used in their own course

Workshop attendees will spend the majority of this workshop engaged in the creation of their own guided inquiry assignment. To facilitate this process, attendees are asked to come to the workshop with an answer prepared for the following questions:

  • What is a core concept that your students might be reasonably expected to discover on their own, if provided with sufficient guidance to reflect on their own prior knowledge and to analyze a few key pieces of new information?
  • If you were to express this core concept in one or two summarizing sentences, what would those sentences be?