Sample Collaborative Learning Tasks & Activities: Guided Reciprocal Peer Questioning

(Last Updated On: 31st October 2008)

Guided Reciprocal Peer Questioning

The goal of this activity is to generate discussion among student groups about a specific topic or content area.

  • Faculty conducts a brief (10-15 minutes) lecture on a topic or content area. Faculty may assign a reading or written assignment as well.
  • Instructor then gives the students a set of generic question stems.
  • Students work individually to write their own questions based on the material being covered.
  • Students do not have to be able to answer the questions they pose. This activity is designed to force students to think about ideas relevant to the content area.
  • Students should use as many question stems as possible.
  • Grouped into learning teams, each student offers a question for discussion, using the different stems.

Sample question stems:

  • What is the main idea of…?
  • What if…?
  • How does…affect…?
  • What is a new example of…?
  • Explain why…?
  • Explain how…?
  • How does this relate to what I’ve learned before?
  • What conclusions can I draw about…?
  • What is the difference between… and…?
  • How are…and…similar?
  • How would I use…to…?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of…?
  • What is the best…and why?

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