Student active learning in a digital classroom: high-performing science students’ perceptions of their experiences


  • Helen Palmer University of Agder



In March 2020 higher education institutions across Norway closed campuses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This study explored five high-performing science students’ perceptions of their experiences with active learning in a digital physiology classroom. A thematic analysis explored the detailed first-person subjective experiences of learning in the digital classroom to add to the knowledge base about how science students can be supported to learn physiology in remote and digital learning contexts. Five superordinate themes central to the students’ experience were identified: ‘accountability and self-regulation’, ‘building strategy and structure’, ‘creating community and social learning’, ‘difficulty and discomfort essential’ and ‘efforts to reframe adversity’. The students recognised the importance of self-regulation, structure, social interactions, and challenge, explaining how aspects of the course helped or hindered their learning. Differential responses to the use of peer-evaluation and the ability of high-performing students to reframe adversity were evident. Active learning approaches in the digital classroom supported science students in gaining a deeper understanding of physiology.


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Nordic Journal of STEM Education - Full Papers