Alan Mulvey


Inclusive and Equitable Quality Education, and Active Learning

The sustainable development goals (SDGs) of the UNDP of interest to educators aim to “ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote life-long education opportunities for all” with “equal access for all women”. Development programs that focus on women’s participation in education describe the development of active learning. Building intrinsically motivated participation in society is seen as both the critical path towards a goal of sustainable development and the goal itself. A desired outcome, mirrored in an education path of highly participatory, active learning, would seem to make sense. It is worth looking to see if there are indicators that support the assumption. This article presents a survey of University English language students taking part in active learning classes in EAP (English for Academic Purposes, Dept. of Int’l English). Through a focus on gender issues, the appreciation students have for participatory classes was discovered. The survey confirmed active learning inclusivity and gave a corpus of feedback describing a shared preference for group-work classes that cited the value of building skills of critical reasoning, self-expression and comparing opinions, or, as one student expressed it, “not just input but output” in class, over and above exclusively listening to a teacher.