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Why Use Discussion in the Classroom?

The following are some reasons why you should consider using group discussion in your classroom:

Research shows that students learn best by doing. Students have better retention of course material when they figure out the answers to problems on their own, rather than being told the answers.

Group discussions help students develop their verbal skills. When interacting with others, students learn to express their opinions, explain their positions, defend their positions, think on their feet, and hear other people's opinions.

When participating in a group discussion, students can learn that other people may think and feel differently than they do. By watching the instructor's acceptance of various views, students can see that it is all right for people to have different opinions. Students may learn that there may be more than one answer to a problem. Discussion can help them broaden their thinking about themselves and their view of the world.

Classes are more interesting for both the instructor and the students when students have the opportunity to talk. Often, group discussions bring classes closer together because members establish rapport with one another and reach into the affective, as well as the cognitive, learning domains.

Participating in a class discussion can be a nice change of pace. The classroom may become noisy, lively, and/or provide the opportunity to have fun while still getting course information covered.

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