Should Teachers encourage Questions from students?

Essay by jack_David999 June 2006

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A teacher can either deliver lectures and expect her students to understand everything without having any doubts. Alternatively, she can explain concepts to the students and encourage them to question everything to resolve their doubts or queries. I feel the second option is a better alternative as it enhances learning.

During the course of the lecture, the students might come up with certain doubts about whatever is being taught, or they might be inquisitive to know more about something being discusses. When the teacher encourages the students to ask questions, their(students') doubts would be resolved and they would have a clear understanding of the concepts being discussed. On the contrary, if the teacher doesn't entertain questions, then the students might not understand the topic completely or interpret the concepts incorrectly.

Again, when the students know that their teacher expects them to ask questions, they would be more attentive in the class.

Being silent throughout the lecture might make the teacher feel that the student is not paying attention or is not interested in the class. This would motivate the students(or force disinterested students) to pay attention to whatever is being done in the class. This, again, would help them get the understand the concepts clearly.

The only problem with this approach is that the students might ask questions which relate to minor details or which might not be relevant to the issue at hand. One unrelated question would lead to another one from the same or a different student. Answering such questions would waste the collective class time. This could also stray the focus of entire class away from the main topic. The teacher could address such doubts, which often could be genuine, with the student individually after class hours.

In spite of the problems associated...