In the traditional Q&A session, students have the opportunity to ask questions. The Q&A session offers both the lecturer and students insight into the degree to which students have mastered the course materials. A Q&A session is an especially valuable activity in an online setting, where recorded lectures mean students have fewer opportunities to spontaneously ask the lecturer questions.
- Activity goal
- Assess | Exchange knowledge | Recap / Summarize | Reflect
- In class
- Hybrid | Offline | Online
- < 10 minutes| < 30 minutes| < 60 minutes
- Group size
- Small | Medium | Large
MS Teams, Zoom, Mentimeter
Decide in advance when you want to compile a list of the students’ questions. One option is to ask the students to ask questions during the session, but many lecturers prefer to compile a list of questions prior to the session. This gives a good idea of what kind of questions the students are concerned with and that is beneficial when preparing the Q&A session.
If you would like to compile the questions before the session, a number of different options are available. Suggestions are listed in the Tips & tricks section below.
Start the Q&A session and answer the students’ questions. You can set up separate Q&A sessions of 60 minutes, for example, or reserve 15 minutes at the end of each class to hold a Q&A session.
If a question recurs on a regular basis, it is possible there is a gap somewhere in the explanation of this subject. To remedy this gap, you can publish an additional explanation online using, for example, a video or a text.
De Q&A session has been added to teachEUR by Julian Schaap, lecturer at ESHCC. He thinks this teaching activity should be included because it's ideal for answering questions after lectures. Beside that he notices that students that do not have questions often join because they might learn something from questions asked by their peers or are looking for social interaction after a lecture.
Communicate clearly regarding how the students are required to ask their questions and how they can expect an answer.
Tips for compiling questions
- Compile the questions using the Discussion Board in Canvas. Students can post their question in the forum and view questions posted by others. If so desired, students can respond to each other’s questions at this stage.
- Have students post their questions before or during their lecture using an interactive tool such as Miro.
- If you would like to compile questions during the session, different options are available for this purpose:
- Have the students raise their virtual hand, ask their questions in the chat, or students can simply unmute their microphone and ask the question.
- Use an online tool such as Mentimeter to compile the questions. Some of the Mentimeter question types you can use in a Q&A session are listed below.
Tips for using Mentimeter in Q&A's
Mentimeter offers many question types you can use for Q&A sessions like:
- The Wordcloud. Ask the students to enter the subject they are still having difficulties with. The Wordcloud will then display which subjects students are having the most difficulty with.
- The Q&A question. This question type offers students the option of submitting questions. As the host/moderator, you can select which questions you will show. Fellow students can upvote questions, and this is also a way of seeing which questions the students want to ask.
- The Scales question. Ask students to rate how well they have mastered certain subjects on a scale of 1 to 10. Students sometimes find it difficult to accurately phrase a question. Collecting input using another method, such as the scales question, can be a way of initiating the discussion.
Have students answer each other’s questions first, before you, as the lecturer, provide an explanation.
Alternate between the live Q&A and a few practice questions for the examination. Set up an interactive polling question and immediately discuss the answers.
Please consider the tools and materials mentioned here as suggestions. In many cases it’s possible to use alternative tools. Please turn to the Learning & Innovation team of your faculty (EUR or EMC) first to see which online and offline tools are available and how to apply them.
MS Teams of Zoom voor een online meeting.
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