What are Engaging and Empowering Pedagogies?

Engaging and Empowering Pedagogies is an overarching term to describe an approach to learning and teaching that encompasses active, authentic and collaborative learning strategies. The purpose of the approach is to build students’ professional capability and confidence and cultivate their ability to learn effectively in work contexts.

The common characteristic of active, authentic and collaborative learning is that they are student-centred strategies that are intentionally designed to engage students in learning and in so doing empower them to take responsibility for their own learning.

Employing engaging pedagogies involves designing for three dimensions of student engagement – affect, cognition and behaviour (Kahu 2013).

These dimensions of engagement are influenced and shaped by the learning environment (the educator, the course, the University as well as the wider context). Therefore, as educators, we have a role to play in encouraging student engagement through the design of our teaching sessions, our courses and our programs.

What support do students need?

A starting point for teaching using engaging and empowering pedagogies is helping students see the relevance of what they are being asked to learn. Relevance includes a personal connection with the material (engaging them emotionally for example, by piquing their curiosity); through a connection with their professional/employment ambitions; and/or through a connection between new material and their prior knowledge. Without the element of relevance students are likely not to engage with the material.

Why incorporate Engaging and Empowering Pedagogies?

Students become empowered when they are able to monitor their learning and modify their learning strategies accordingly – they can control their role in learning. The Course Design Standards encourage us to consider how we incorporate well designed learning and assessment activities which help students

The Griffith Learning and Teaching Framework and Course Design Standards encourages staff to consider these three approaches when designing their teaching sessions, courses and programs. The following table provides a summary of each approach.

Where could I learn more?

For more information take a look at the following factsheets.

Active Learning

Authentic Learning

Collaborative Learning

If you have any questions about teaching using engaging and empowering pedagogies, contact:

Dr Jude Williams
Senior Consultant, Learning and Teaching
Learning Futures

What digital tools can be leveraged?

There are numerous digital tools that are supported by Griffith that support the use of engaging and empowering pedagogies. To find these tools click on the following links

Tech Ecosystem

Active Learning Strategies Tool