Where's the evidence that active learning works?

Adv Physiol Educ. 2006 Dec;30(4):159-67. doi: 10.1152/advan.00053.2006.


Calls for reforms in the ways we teach science at all levels, and in all disciplines, are wide spread. The effectiveness of the changes being called for, employment of student-centered, active learning pedagogy, is now well supported by evidence. The relevant data have come from a number of different disciplines that include the learning sciences, cognitive psychology, and educational psychology. There is a growing body of research within specific scientific teaching communities that supports and validates the new approaches to teaching that have been adopted. These data are reviewed, and their applicability to physiology education is discussed. Some of the inherent limitations of research about teaching and learning are also discussed.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cognitive Science
  • Education, Medical, Undergraduate
  • Humans
  • Physiology / education
  • Problem-Based Learning / standards*
  • Psychology, Educational
  • Science / education*
  • Teaching