2019 Year of Reflective Teaching Blog Post - March 2019

2019 Year of Reflective Teaching - March 2019

By: Kem Saichaie, Ph.D., Associate Director, Learning and Teaching Support
As continuation of our February post on promoting metacognition for student learning, here are two more practical strategies (i.e., Classroom Inquiry Questionnaire and Learning Audit) to consider as we start to wrap up the Winter term and prepare for the Spring classes. Brookfield (2017) suggests that the strategies also serve as ways for instructors to gather feedback from students about their classroom experiences and to encourage them to reflect on their learning. 

CIQ - Classroom Inquiry Questionnaire

Designed to elicit thoughts about the affective peaks and valleys student encounter in the classroom, the CIQ can help instructors better understand a spectrum of student thoughts on a range of content to classroom climate. The CIQ also helps instructors provide rationale for why classes are designed for student learning and to uncover student concerns. 

Here is the CIQ (modified from Brookfield, 2017). 


  • Describe one moment during class this week when you felt the most engaged in what was happening.
  • Describe one moment during class this week when you felt the most confused about what was happening.
  • Describe an affirming or helpful action by any person (instructor, teaching assistant, fellow student) during class this week. Write “N/A” if this does not apply.
  • Describe a confusing or negative action by anyone person (instructor, teaching assistant, fellow student) during class this week. Write “N/A” if this does not apply.
  • Describe one thing that you found to be the most surprising during class this week. 


Download a CIQ Template to use in your class


Brookfield suggests giving students the final five minutes of class to complete the form (on paper, for in-person classes) and have them submit the written comments to a student volunteer from class - the volunteer then hands the stack of papers to the instructor. 

Instructors then analyze the comments and look for themes that emerge from the responses (either as a whole or sample of the whole). Brookfield suggests that instructors summarize the themes and address them with the class. He also recommends describing ways that you (and/or TAs) will address the comments in class, lab, section, or studio. 

Learning Audit

To help demonstrate to student that learning is occuring, Brookfield suggests the Learning Audit. Based on a weekly time interval like the CIQ, the Learning Audit allows students to reflect on what they learned and elucidate even the incremental parts of the learning process.

“In completing the audit, learners sometimes realize that more is going on than they’d assumed.”

The learning audit should be done at the end of the week and consists of the following questions (modified from Brookfield, 2017):

  • What do I now know that I did not know at this time last week?
  • What can I now do that I could not do at this time last week?
  • What could I teach someone else to know or do that they I could not have known or done last week?

Students can share their responses with peers and/or submit them to the instructor. Brookfield suggests having the students keep their audits and reflect on their responses after various intervals throughout the term.

Request a Reflective Teaching Journal 

As you transition between terms, would a CIQ or Learning Audit work in your classroom? Responses from each of these strategies will provide fertile grounds for reflection.  Let CEE support your reflection with a free reflective journal so that you can capture your insights about your teaching. 

If you would like a reflective journal, complete the following form: [insert link to the form here] and we will send you one via campus mail.

Request a Journal 


Brookfield, S. D. (2017). Becoming a critically reflective teacher. San Francisco, CA: John Wiley & Sons.

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