Relevant and Engaging

Defining “Relevant and Engaging”

The following description of “Relevant and Engaging” comes from the TFELT report of June 4, 2021. In this description, “Key terms” refers to descriptive terms that were generated through TFELT’s examination of relevant research literature and iterative brainstorming and refining during MU community workshop activities during September and October 2019. For more information on this process, please see the “TFELT Process to Determine Definition and dimensions of Effective Teaching” section on the task force’s online archive of in-progress work.

Relevant and Engaging means that the instructor helps students discover the relevance of the subject matter to their lives and future professions. The instructor engages students in active learning to produce authentic and creative works. 

Key terms for this dimension include: Active Learning, Collaborative, Modeling Disciplinary Process, Metacognition, Culturally knowledgeable. 


Freeman, S., Eddy, S.L., McDonough, M., Smith, M.K., Okoroafor, N., Jordt, H., & Wenderoth, M.P. (2014). Active learning increases student performance in science, engineering, and mathematics. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 111(23), 8410-8415.

Harris, N. & Bacon, C. E. W. (2019). Developing cognitive skills through active learning: A systematic review of health care professions. Athletic Training Education Journal, 14(2), 135-148.

Weimer, M. (2013). Learner-centered teaching: Five key changes to practice. Jossey-Bass.

Examples of “Relevant and Engaging” Teaching

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Resources for Developing “Relevant and Engaging” Teaching

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