My PR class @ Wake Forest this semester was front-loaded, ending before the MPRE. For our final class review, I tried a new group activity that worked very well. (We do lots of group work and projects in my flipped class.)
First, I prepared four sets of high-level review questions, with a focus not on the ticky-tacky details of the Rules, but on reviewing/connecting broader topics and issues. Each set had six questions. During our in-person, face-to-face class, I divided our class of about 50 students into 8 groups, with 6-7 people per group. I named the groups Team A-1, A-2, B-1, B-2, C-1, C-2, D-1, and D-2.
Teams A-1 and A-2 received the same set of questions, as did B-1 and B-2, C-1 and C-2, and D-1 and D-2. I then asked the Teams to select the one question that the Team could agree was the hardest. Team A-1 then gave Team A-2 their question to answer, and vice versa.
As always, I circulated the class while the Teams were working and answered questions, engaged the students, and raised issues. We then reviewed as a class those questions that were selected. I was very interested to discover that no teams selected the same question as the “hardest.”
The students’ feedback after class indicated that this was a very helpful exercise for several reasons: (1) giving them a sense of “bigger picture” ideas before the exam (and MPRE); (2) making connections they had not previously recognized; (3) building confidence in the areas in which they felt proficient at the time; and (4) providing a set of questions for review and thought before the exam. I plan to use this exercise again.
I’m happy to share the question sets to any who are interested; feel free to email me: email@example.com.