There are clear opportunities for developing active learning within the lecture environment. Use of learning technologies allows for increased interaction in large group teaching, ways to influence the direction of a teaching session, in-class identification of knowledge gaps and collaboration within small groups.
Many of the approaches here will work well within traditional lecture environments, but also complement learning designs that utilise the online space for activities and knowledge-transfer, freeing up the face-to-face time for synchronous interaction and learning. Choices over the design of activities in both face-to-face and online contexts are likely to be best guided by their alignment with clearly-defined learning outcomes within and across individual teaching sessions. Across modules, blended learning designs including front-loaded learning designs can provide powerful opportunities for learning by explicitly connecting taught sessions with guided independent study.
Electronic Voting Systems are one means of facilitating interaction opportunities within the live lecture. In-Class Polling allows for an instructor to engage even large cohorts in synchronous exercises to test the understanding and application of taught concepts. The technology is amenable to a range of different session designs, and may also be used within small cohorts or seminar-style situations as a method of facilitating anonymous responses or gauging cohort confidence in their own understanding.
Utilising Google Docs, Sheets and Forms, you can create engaging in-class activities that require students to create and contribute content to shared spaces. Sheets and Forms can be used to gather data from a cohort in real time, then with the Sheet shared to all involved, the data analysed collectively or in small groups. One of the motivational factors here is that the data comes from the cohort and is owned by them, rather than originating from an abstracted source.
Google Docs can be used within smaller groups either to collect ideas or to complete templates which enable the students to demonstrate their understanding and learning to the lecturer. The lecturer would set up the Google Docs in advance and share with the cohort, allocating a document per group. The lecturer can view the Docs during the session and bring these up on the projection screen if required.