A Guide for Students in the Multicultural University
5. Benefiting from lectures Lecturing involves a presentation by a lecturer to a group of students, often large numbers of students. Lectures involve mostly one-way communication – from the lecturer to groups of students that can vary in size from 20 to 2000, with the possibility of questions being raised at designated intervals, and some group work discussions. Whilst their effectiveness is often discussed, lectures are a part of almost every tertiary course (Smith 1994). The lecture is the standard method for teaching large classes, particularly at undergraduate level. Lectures are used to transfer information to the student in an efficient, well-structured way. They can also motivate the student to self-study (Barnes and Blevins 2002). In the current climate of easy access to information through the Internet and other electronic sources, value-adding is important. In other words, a lecture takes on a different role in an electronic age where access to information is so easy for the astute student. For a student, there needs to be a serious consideration of what you can do to ensure you get the best value out of a lecture. For a student to get the most out of the lecture process it is important that you feel supported to integrate socially and academically into the programme you are undertaking, and that the cultural capital brought by you and your fellow students is accepted and valued (Zepke and Leach 2006). The learning environment should be comfortable and non-threatening (Anderson and Moore 1998). If you are an...
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