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A few low-stakes questions during the term build engagement, encourage persistence, and can improve learning outcomes.

During labs, students work together to learn Anatomy & Physiology… plus answer these Engagement Booster Questions.

The Need
Students need to meet classmates. After two years of online-only education, returning to in-person labs is a new experience many students find uncomfortable and challenging.

The Existing Resources
Students in the same lab have several similarities that include enrolling in the same lecture section, similar schedules, the same completed prerequisites, similar majors, and career aspirations.

The Goal
Building engagement between students should help more students complete the coursework while building a support network that may extend beyond the classroom.

The Impact on Course Grade
The class has 1,000 total points and we have about ten of these Engagement Booster questions. The total direct impact is just 1% of a student’s grade (10 out of 1,000 points).

The indirect impact of these activities is difficult to measure but is perhaps more significant than the points earned.

Hopefully, students build resources to complete this course and learn skills that carry over from the laboratory into the real world.

The Feedback -Quotes from Fall 2022 students.

This digestive system lab was a ton of fun and I learned a lot! I definitely think this kind of lab activity should be utilized more often! Thanks for the fun lab! ______________

I really enjoyed the lab activity we did today. I felt like I learned a lot. To be honest, I had just started watching your DocDoc lecture videos yesterday so I wasn't too familiar with all the digestion system things just yet. But after this lab, I feel like I have learned a lot about the anatomy of the digestive system and as I am reading the chapter, I feel like I am understanding things better.

It's activities like this and the heart dissection that really help me learn and grasp the concepts better.


I think that activities like the one we had yesterday are important and great! First it was fun. We got the chance to actually talk with each other and get to know others in this class. It was great to not feel "alone" in this race. Second, personally I feel that extra points to my grade are so important. This class is challenging and my grades in some of the assignments do not reflect my knowledge. It is my second time taking KIN 224 and still this is not easy. Activities like this can be fun- but also help learn together new material-hear and say out loud new terms, and give us the chance to earn more points and do better in this class. AGAIN, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THINKING ABOUT US!!!

Engagement Building Questions

What is your Dream Job?
Describe what you are most eager to learn.
Write the first name of someone you worked with today………
What is your Lab Instructor’s email address?
What day and date is your Exam 3?
Find someone in the room who has a different Major and write it here…….
What question(s) can we add to improve the lab experience?

Publisher Location

Las Vegas (Nev.)

Publication Date





Education; Adult Education; Engagement; Low-stakes; Questions; Success


Adult and Continuing Education | Curriculum and Instruction | Curriculum and Social Inquiry | Disability and Equity in Education | Education | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Educational Methods | Higher Education | Higher Education and Teaching | Laboratory and Basic Science Research | Scholarship of Teaching and Learning | Science and Mathematics Education

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Why Ask That?  Low Stakes Questions Build Engagement