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Learning results from what the student does and thinks and only from what the student does and thinks. The teacher can advance learning only by influencing what the student does to learn.

Herbert Simon
Nobel Laureate and former professor at Carnegie Mellon
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  • Creating tangible outcomes
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What it is

What it might look like in the classroom

Why it's important

Creating Tangible Outcomes

Physical products that record, prompt, and reinforce student engagement with key course material.

Ideally, students take the tangible outcome with them after class to serve as a durable artifact of what happened in discussion.

  • Creating opportunities for the session to yield some physical product that students can take home (e.g., notes, chart, concept map, essay outline).
  • The process of developing a tangible outcome to the session can be supported by:
    - Posting an agenda to signal what students will be accomplishing that day.
    - Using the board as discussion occurs to record, organize, summarize, and relate information/ideas. (This translates aural to visual and encourages students to take their own notes.)
  • Serve as useful study aids during and after class, increasing student comprehension and retention of course content.
  • Increases perceived value of the session by providing a reminder of the experience.
  • Students are better able to articulate what skills or knowledge they learned/practiced, and how these relate to success in the class.

View/download a guide to creating tangible outcomes in your discussion section.

This is one of nine TA skills. View/download a chart of all nine skills.

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