What is The Learning Cycle?

The Learning Cycle is an approach to designing learning experiences that capture best the knowledge and theory of how people learn, which was developed by the University of California, Lawrence Hall of Science. There are five phase of The Learning Cycle:

  1. Invitation
  2. Exploration
  3. Concept Invention
  4. Application
  5. Reflection

Each phase offers an important step in assisting students in their learning and understanding of the concepts being covered. To facilitate students learning in at each phase we use different approaches, experiences, and prompting questions for the students. Therefore, the Challenge Question, Your Objective, and Interpretation & Analysis Questions among the different Data Explorations for the same data set vary.

The Learning Cycle can be replicated at different scales from as small as within an activity to as large as across a whole unit/semester. The key is providing your students opportunities to engage in each phase of The Learning Cycle. Each Data Exploration has been designed to be utilized for a specific phase, however multiple Data Explorations per data set have been developed so that you can best choose which way you want to use those data in your teaching.