Other ways to search: Events Calendar | UTHSC | UTHSC News

Leading A Class Discussion


Last Updated:
January 23, 2024

First Published:
January 5, 2023


Class discussions offer many pedagogical benefits, including building community and offering faculty the chance to informally assess student learning. These class discussions can take many forms, including structured, semi-structured, or informal discussion sessions. When planning a class discussion, it is helpful to have a clearly defined goal for the session. In addition to establishing a goal, faculty should consider what preparation students need in advance of a discussion and how learning can be evaluated after the discussion.  

Use the comments section below to let us know your ideas about leading a class discussion.

  1. Set the class tone for productive discussions by including discussion guidelines in your syllabus or by having students write class guidelines.
  2. Prepare for the discussion by establishing a clear goal, selecting a discussion model (formal, structured, informal, etc.) and assigning any needed pre-discussion materials to the class.
  3. Determine how you will assess student learning during the discussion to evaluate its efficacy as a learning tool.
  4. Start small: you can incorporate one discussion linked to one learning objective and then work on building more discussion types into your courses.