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Asking questions

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CLOSED: designed to produce a yes or no answer or to check facts. E.g.
“How many times did you …?”
“Have you finished?”

OPEN: designed to encourage narrative exploration, reflection, description. E.g.
“Tell me what happened?”
“What have you done so far?”
“What might you do next?”
“How will you know if it’s working?”
These first two types of question are good at initiating conversation and putting students at ease.

HYPOTHETICAL: designed to suggest possible options. E.g.
“What do you think will happen if …?”

REFLECTIVE: designed to encourage further thinking without breaking chain of thought.
E.g.
“You said the liquid turned blue …?”
“Can you say more about that?”

These second two types of questions are good for establishing how much a student understands & pushes them to explore the subject in greater detail.

LEADING: These are questions that are really statements
“I’d have thought X … Wouldn’t you?”

MULTIPLE: Piling one question on top of another so that the person does not know which one to answer 1st.

These last two are generally types of question to avoid although they can be useful in certain situations such as trying TO SHUT DOWN A CHATTY PERSON OR A DOMINANT MEMBER OF A GROUP that is monopolising a teaching session.

To improve your questioning skills:
# Practice different questioning techniques in different scenarios.
# Be aware of the answers received from questioning. Be prepared to change direction if necessary.
# Have an open mind, students may come round to a point from a different angle.
# Observe other teaching staff / assistants.

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Written by blueroselady

September 1, 2009 at 5:03 pm

Posted in study

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