• Agita Šmitiņa Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences (LV)
  • Ieva Margeviča-Grīnberga University of Latvia (LV)



Active learning, Active learning methods, Learning environment, Student-centred learning


Rapid changes in education and pedagogy are related not only to the global crisis caused by COVID-19, but also to other changes determined by globalization and technological convergence—labour mobility, changes in different professions and changes in teacher–student relations—that are also affected by intergenerational differences. Changes in the pedagogical paradigm, which are included in the content of the Paris Communiqué (2018) and outlined in many important educational development and planning documents, emphasise students’ transition from being mere recipients of information to being participants actively engaged with new information in a learning environment. Following the identification of problems with a less frequent use of active participation methods in higher education, the University of Latvia implemented an Erasmus+ project entitled Entrance to Future Education (2017–2019). In this project, the authors summarized modern, inspiring, interactive, active engagement-oriented teaching/learning methods in higher education. During the project, several student focus groups were formed to discuss students’ experiences with active engagement methods in studies, and a handbook with various student active engagement methods and games was created. In 2020, 106 students from different Latvian universities were surveyed about their understanding and experience in relation to these teaching methods in their studies. The results showed that, according to students, attitude and ardour are essential for engaging students with enthusiasm and interest in the study process. The results of the survey show the varied experiences of students, as well as different understandings of active learning methods. Students noted that they most often experienced various group projects in studies, presentations and various tasks outside the classroom, but relatively rarely used such methods as creative video making, active use of game elements and constructive feedback from peers


Download data is not yet available.


Banerjee, A., Chitnis, U. B., Jadhav, S. L., Bhawalkar, J. S., Chaudhury, S. (2009). Hypothesis testing, type I and type II errors. Industrial Psychiatry Journal, 2009 Jul-Dec, 18(2), 127–131. Retrieved from

Christersson, C., Staaf, P., Zhang, T. and Peterbauer, H. (2019). Promoting active learning

in universities: Thematic Peer Group Report. Learning & Teaching Paper #5

(Brussels, EUA). Retrieved from

Chang, Zh. (2013). What core competencies are related to teachers’ innovative teaching.

Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education, 41(1), 9–27.

EHEA. (2009). Leuven and Louvain-la-Neuve Communiqué. Retrieved from

Elen, J., Clarebout, G., Leonard, R., Lowyck, J. (2007). Student-centred and teacher-

centred learning environments: what students think. Teaching in Higher Education. Vol 12, Issue 1. DOI:

European Commission. (2018). European Commission /EACEA/Eurydice (2018). The European Higher Education Area in 2018: Bologna Process Implementation Report. Luxembourg, Publications Office of the European Union. Retrieved from

European University Association. (2019). Student-centred learning: approaches to quality assurance. Retrieved from

European Students’ Union (ESU). (2015). Overview on Student-Centred Learning in Higher Education in Europe: Research Study. Retrieved from

European Students’ Union (ESU). (2018). Bologna with Student Eyes: The Final Countdown. Retrieved from

Entrance to future education (EFE). (2019). Innovative Teaching in HE. Retrieved from

Heaysman, O. (2019). Content teaching: innovative and traditional practices. Journal of Educational Studies, 45(3), 342–356.

Kok, L.E. (2014). Investigating Teachers' Views of Student-Centred Learning Approach. International Education Studies, Vol 7, N7, p143-148.

Khairnar, C.M. (2015). Advance pedagogy: Innovative methods of teaching and learning. International Journal of Information and Education Technology, 5(11), 870–873.

McCabe, O’Connor, U. (2014). A. Student-centred learning: the role and responsibility of the lecturer. Teaching in Higher Education, Vol 19, Issue 4. DOI

Ovbiagbonhia, A.R., Kolloffel, B., den Brok, P. (2019). Educating for innovation: Students’ perceptions of the learning environment and of their own innovation competence. Learning Environments Research, 22, 387–407.

Panke, S., Stephens, J. (2018). Beyond the Echo Chamber: Pedagogical Tools for Civic Engagement Discourse and Reflection. Educational Technology & Society. Vol. 21, No.1 (January 2018), pp. 248-263.

Paris Communiqué. (2018). Retrieved from

European Higher Education Area. (2015). Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance in the European Higher Education Area (ESG). Retrieved from

Stebbins, R. (2001). Exploratory research in the social sciences: what is exploration? SAGE Publications. Retrieved from

Sursock, A. and Smidt, H. (2010). A decade of change in European Higher Education. (Brussels, EUA). Retrieved from

Sadler, I. (2012). The challenges for new academics in adopting student-centred approaches to teaching. Studies in Higher Education, Vol 37, 2012, 731-745.

Tharayil, S., Borrego, M., Prince, M., Nguyen, K., Shekhar, P., Finelli, C. (2018). Strategies to mitigate student resistance to active learning. International Journal of Stem Education, Issue 5, Vol 7.




How to Cite

Šmitiņa, A., & Margeviča-Grīnberga, I. (2021). ACTIVE LEARNING METHODS IN STUDIES: STUDENTS’ OPINIONS AND EXPERIENCES. SOCIETY. INTEGRATION. EDUCATION. Proceedings of the International Scientific Conference, 1, 631-641.