What is Just-in-Time Teaching?
The JiTT Process - Connecting Out-of-Class and In-Class Learning
- Developing and distributing a set of web-based questions (JiTT exercises) for students to answer online prior to the next class, and
- Using students' JiTT responses to create meaningful in-class learning activities requiring students to address misconceptions, faulty or incomplete reasoning, and knowledge gaps highlighted in their responses.
Using JiTT Exercises to Promote Pre-class Preparation
JiTT questions require students to "do something" to get them prepared for the next class – read a textbook or article, complete a simulation or experiment, watch a video, etc. – and often involve problem-solving, critical thinking, and analytical reasoning skills that encourage higher-order thinking skills. The questions refer to material or concepts that have not yet been covered in the course, requiring students to process information or apply concepts in ways that cannot simply be looked up in a textbook.
In practice, JiTT exercises can be a combination of multiple choice and short answer/essay questions, but are most effective when they require students to reveal their understanding of the assigned material. To accomplish this, it is best if at least some of the questions are open-ended. A key benefit of JiTT is helping to make student thinking visible, something that is more difficult to do with multiple-choice questions.
After posting on a course management system such as Blackboard, Moodle, or Sakai, students are required to submit their responses to JiTT questions online by a specified deadline, usually just a few hours prior to the class. However, the deadline could be as much as one day before class if this is necessitated by instructor or student schedules.
Using JiTT Responses to Inform In-class Activities
After the JiTT submission deadline, the instructor reads through student responses to the JiTT questions, looking for patterns:
- What do the students understand?
- What are they struggling with?
- Are there misconceptions that need to be addressed?
After grouping the responses into common themes, the instructor typically selects a few representative answers to be shown (anonymously) in the classroom (via a digital projector, e.g.) at the start of class. These responses can be used to frame an interactive (whole class or small group) discussion or (preferably) used to develop cooperative learning exercises addressing specific learning gaps observed in students' JiTT responses. Having students work on these activities in cooperative learning groups provides additional feedback and formative assessment on their learning.
Summary: Students' out-of-class JiTT responses are used to directly inform the in-class learning environment, providing a positive feedback loop that motivates further student learning.
Learn more about using students' JiTT responses to develop effective classroom activities ...