Errors for Learning: Studying Students’ errors, an innovative process to analyze your methods and teach better




Brière, Manon

Errors, whether they are unusual or recurring, are an invaluable tool for teaching and learning. They are the substance, the base upon which the dialogue about learning is built between students and their teacher. This article introduces a theoretical framework to analyze students' errors and determine their sources more precisely than just by surmising. Issuing from exploratory research the author conducted as part of her master's degree in college-level teaching. This error research process provides the teacher with a concrete tool for exploring the causes of student errors that goes beyond the teacher's acquired views and experience. Guided by targeted questioning regarding recurring errors in their discipline, the teacher will be able to determine the most appropriate didactic and pedagogical strategies to implement in order to overcome the obstacles to learning. This dimension, still underexplored at the college level, will be of interest to all educators who care to reflect on the role of error in the learning process in order to better adapt their interventions.

The AQPC acknowledges the financial support, in 2014-2015, of the Government of Canada through Canadian Heritage, Canada Periodical Fund, Business Innovation component.

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