Inquiry based Learning

Understanding plays a vital role in learning. There were times when students used to do ‘rote learning’ or ‘mugging up’. This involves memorizing things without understanding them and with continuous repetitions of the same things. But nowadays there is an improvement in books syllabus and technology for simplifying the process of learning and thus the role of Inquiry-based Learning comes into play. Students are encouraged to ask a question and understand the concept either through practical approach or theoretically. You would find more comprehensive concepts of studies are introduced now that makes easier for students to cope up with the stress of learning. One such method is Inquiry-based learning that is developed in the 1960s to give a renovate traditional form of instructions.

What is Inquiry-based learning?

The inquiry-based learning method is the method of active learning that usually involves questions regarding the problems or scenarios. It is beyond rote learning and children usually enjoy this type of learning, as it satisfies their curiosity and they gain knowledge as per their understanding. This process is simplified with a help of an instructor. Inquiry-based research usually includes problem-based learning along with investigations on different topics, projects, research for ease of understanding the subject. It encourages the practice and thinking skills of a child.

Inquiry based Learning

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For the student’s side, it is easy to ask a question to attain knowledge, but there are times when it is difficult for the teacher to answer the questions. Teachers usually end up with a shrug or simply say that I do not know. If the inquiry-based learning is properly nurtured then there is excitement generated in neurons of students and it encourages them to find more questions and answers to those question at their own.

In order to satisfy the curiosity of the student, a teacher has to improve her own curiosity quotient. She always has to be advanced in the world of knowledge for her students. As per Harvard Business Review, a person with higher curiosity quotient can show more flexibility and have a new level of handling complexity.

Steps of Inquiry-Based Learning –

  1. Confirmation Inquiry– It is usually a method in which the results are known prior, the motto of this inquiry is to confirm the results. Students are provided with a type of questions or procedures for which they have to perform or solve, to experience and know the answer by themselves. It is usually implied when there is some knowledge about a subject or there is previously learned idea. Due to this, the students would experience the investigation process and practice their particular inquiry skills. They will collect and record data in order to know the answer.
  2. Structured Inquiry– In this type of inquiry questions and procedure are provided in order to investigate and discover the answers. When students try to investigate by following the procedures and necessary materials for completing the process, he discovers the relationship between different things. He understands the concepts from the data collected which leads to discovering new consequences. The motto of this inquiry is it allows the teacher or instructors to teach students the base of investigating things and being able to handle techniques of types of equipment and procedures.
  3. Guided Inquiry– In this type of inquiry, a teacher would provide all necessary pieces of equipment to the students. The role of the student is to develop inquiries and solve the problem himself. Later on, he can communicate his results with a fellow mate or instructor.
  4. Open true Inquiry –Students practice this type of method in science projects or science fair. It is based on student-driven. Students come up with their own problems; they follow the procedure and solve themselves.

Benefits of Inquiry-Based Learning –

  • Boost Curriculum Content – It helps to make the students learn and understand the core concepts. It helps in giving an opportunity to enhance and support their talents and passions. They explore the content of their curriculum and try to find different answers.
  • Active learning– When a student is given freedom to ask questions and problem-solving method, he keeps his mind open for a process of learning involve and discover new things. It makes them feel empowered.
  • Openness – It promoted child-developing capacity with an open mind. He builds up confidence when asked about different things related to education materials, social skills, cultural differences and many more. The child would be able to answer when he is clear about the concept.
  • Deeper Understanding– It encourages the child to seek the deeper meaning, knowledge, and understanding of different process and materials provided to them.
  • The culture of Inquiry – Children establish a culture where they are encouraged to express their views and accept another’s idea. When they are encouraged to share their views, they are more likely to participate in contribution many things in the classroom amongst their peers.

Some Inquiry-Based Learning Strategies may prove helpful to tutors.

  • Provide them guidance for resources and technology to boost their learning
  • Indulge them in activities that focus on building information and processing.
  • Encourage them to contribute ideas, develop ideas, question themselves and group members. Let them investigate to the depth of the subjects.
  • To improve the curiosity regarding a subject, play video or distribute some piece of information relevant to it.
  • Contribute them to activities that improve their learning styles.
  • Give them examples of real-life scenarios rather than traditional concepts of books.

Wrapping up – The inquiry-based Learning method is useful for tutors and for students both. Educators should embrace this idea and helps the learning experience of students. It plays a major role in knowledge development, improving coordination with classmates; engage them in different projects and many other things. Do not make your child quite when he is about to ask you any question out of curiosity. You are not supposed to stop him from interrogating, as this is one way of letting him make things fir into his or her mind for a lifetime. Do not try to hamper the learning process of your child by not letting him or her to do inquiries.

Also Read: Applications of Machine Learning