Contemporary Teaching-Learning Practices: Implementation and Challenges of Student-Centered Learning Approach in Higher Education of Ethiopia

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Birhanu Moges


Student-centered learning approach is a key factor which focuses on students’ learning experiences and development, well-being and retention so that higher educational learning is delivered in ways that are demonstrably in the students’ best interests. In the teacher-centered approach to teaching, most of the class time is spent with the teacher lecturing and the student watching, listening and taking notes. The present study aimed to explore students’ and instructors’ perception, practices and challenges in implementing SCL. The study employed descriptive survey design by combining quantitative and qualitative approach to collect, process, analyzes and presents the data. A total of 12 instructors and 66 students of the second and third year psychology students have participated in the study through availability and purposive sampling technique. The instruments were questionnaire, classroom observation and un-structured interviews were conducted. Accordingly, the findings indicated that the teaching practices in implementing student-centered learning approach were not as expected. The result also showed that instructors had positive attitude toward the SCL, regarding several aspects such as providing the benefits to both students and instructors, being effective for teaching, creating close relationship and establishing active classroom environment. In the end, instructors also agreed that student-centered instruction will improve the ability of the students to learn the courses. Due to different challenges, most of the students were less interested to learn by SCL, such as sense of fear, lack of interest and confidence. The study further found that the lack of classroom facilities and conditions, large class size, inadequate teachers training, tendency of focusing on teacher-centered approach and limited ability to implement were the challenges of implementing. Finally, it is recommended that responsible bodies rearrange the facilities and conditions necessary inputs for the effective implantation of SCL. To minimize the challenges, instructors should create different techniques to make students participants in teaching-learning process.

Challenges, higher education, student-centered learning approach, teacher-centered approach.

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How to Cite
Moges, B. (2019). Contemporary Teaching-Learning Practices: Implementation and Challenges of Student-Centered Learning Approach in Higher Education of Ethiopia. Journal of Education, Society and Behavioural Science, 32(4), 1-16.
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