Active vs. Passive Learning: Online Design at Melbourne Business School

By Brian Rashid on August 29, 2023

In today’s digital landscape where new ideas continually reshape the field of higher education, Engageli seeks to spotlight thought leaders who are making an impact. This article, featuring the work of Warren Kennard, explores how how Melbourne Business School is bringing active learning to virtual classrooms.

As online and remote learning become increasingly prevalent, Melbourne Business School is rethinking its instructional methods and curriculum to provide effective virtual education. In this blog post, we'll explore how Melbourne Business School Online is adapting its approach to foster active learning in the online environment, highlighting the distinction between passive remote learning and purpose-built online design.

The Shift from Remote Learning to Online Design

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Melbourne Business School - along with many other higher education Institutions - had been gradually embracing a move to online learning. However, the sudden shift to remote learning during the pandemic posed challenges, as in many cases it merely tried to replicate the offline experience in an online format using virtual conferencing software.

This, among other challenges, led to the sector-wide need for a clear distinction between remote learning and purpose-built online design. Melbourne Business School Online remains committed and dedicated to designing online courses from the ground up, focusing on active engagement and student-centered learning experiences.

Embracing Virtual Active Learning

Passive learning, such as watching videos or passively consuming content, is being replaced by active learning approaches at Melbourne Business School Online. The School places a strong emphasis on engagement and interactive experiences that encourage students out of their comfort zones and develop their critical thinking skills. This shift from passive to active learning is facilitated by leveraging various tools and platforms within the online environment.

1. Purposeful Design: Melbourne Business School Online designs its programs to prompt active learning. Rather than relying on traditional lectures, facilitators take on the role of coaches, guiding students through the learning process. They encourage students to explore the subject matter, ask questions, and engage in discussions with peers and colleagues. A big component of learning is our ability to engage in meaningful discourse, challenge our assumptions, and consider alternatives.

2. Collaborative Tools: To foster active learning, Melbourne Business School Online utilizes online collaboration tools such as Yellowdig, a social community platform, and Engageli, a purpose-built active learning environment. With thoughtful and intentional design, Engageli enables students to participate in active discussions, ask questions, and share insights. By engaging in these interactions, students learn from one another and challenge their own perspectives.

3. Prompting Inquiry: Melbourne Business School Online prompts students to think critically and go beyond surface-level understanding. They are encouraged to conduct further research, seek different perspectives, and explore real-world applications of the concepts being taught. This inquiry-based approach deepens learning and promotes active engagement.

Benefits of Active Learning for Online Students

Active learning offers numerous benefits for students in the online environment. By encouraging active participation, Melbourne Business School Online helps students develop critical thinking skills, problem-solving abilities, and effective communication. The collaborative nature of online courses fosters a sense of community and enables students to learn from diverse perspectives.

The Future of Online Learning

Melbourne Business School Online remains committed to evolving its online learning experience. By prioritizing active learning and purposeful design, the School aims to provide students with engaging, interactive, and meaningful educational opportunities. Continued exploration of innovative EdTech tools and platforms like Engageli will further enhance the online learning experience and prepare students for the future.

The shift from passive remote learning to active purpose-built online design is transforming the educational experience at Melbourne Business School. The School fosters student engagement, critical thinking, and collaboration by leveraging purposeful design, collaborative tools, and inquiry-based approaches. As online and remote learning continues to evolve, Melbourne Business School Online remains at the forefront of providing effective and engaging online education.

Published by
Brian Rashid
August 29, 2023