Metacognition and teaching statistics

Our introductory statistics course, STAT100, is organized as a “flipped classroom”. Instead of the traditional lecture format, students watch lecture videos at home and do their exercises in class. The teachers spend their time supervising the students in their exercises, instead of giving lectures.

In corresponding research, we study how various cognitive factors, such as brain physiology and personality theory, influence students’ learning capabilities in statistics and other subjects. Part of our work involves incorporating newer digital platforms in classroom settings. Our aim is to apply statistical and cognitive theories to student data, and to implement teaching methods that are adapted to different cognitive styles. Our goal is to motivate students to adopt personalized learning strategies to reach a higher level of understanding.


  • Metacognition – personality-based learning

    Metacognition involves awareness around one’s own learning strategies and thought processes, and has implications for how students best learn and educators best teach. Personality-based learning methods seek to tailor education towards individual cognitive types, moving away from “one size fits all” classrooms. We are building upon our previous projects (see below) to develop new teaching methods to adapt to students’ needs. In the process, we are utilizing cross-disciplinary expertise in the fields of psychology, brain research, statistics and pedagogy.

    Our project incorporates students from STAT100. Students are an integral part of the project, as data is gathered on personality type, biometric measurements, response to various teaching methods, and preferred method of study (individual versus group settings).

    We collaborate with Vitenparken and the Learning Center at NMBU, and the National Centre for Science Recruitment at NTNU on this project.

    BIAS participants: Kathrine Frey Frøslie, Hilde Vinje, Trygve Almøy and Solve Sæbø

    Further Reading:

    SæbøS.Almøy, T., Brovold, H. (2015). Does academia disfavor contextual and extraverted students?  Uniped, 38(4): 274–283.

    Invarians drøftet i et nevropsykologisk perspektiv med spesiell referanse til realfaglig kognisjon. ‘Fire veier inn i matematikken’ (in Norwegian)

    Personlighetskrise i forelesningssalen (in Norwegian)

    «Kari» gruer seg til mattetimene, kan hun likevel bli sjefdesigner i et mobilselskap? (in Norwegian)

  • Digital interdisciplinary teaching methods

    One of the challenges we face as educators is to explain to students the context and relevancy of courses with a largely theoretical component, such as statistics. By building bridges between different obligatory courses, we can ground the theoretical with the practical, and motivate students further in their studies. At KBM, many of our undergraduate students take introductory microbiology (BIO130) and statistics (STAT100) at the same time. This gives us the opportunity to develop interdisciplinary teaching methods to increase learning outcomes in both courses.

    Today’s students take advantage of different learning platforms, including digital tools such as short films on the internet.  In our project we are developing films that can be utilized by students in both BIO130 and STAT100, created by students who have taken these courses.  The films are grounded in BIO130, and will be used to explain laboratory exercises, and how the data collected in these exercises can be statistically analyzed. The data collected will be utilized by STAT100 students, who will gain a deeper understanding of applied statistics. In this way we hope to develop a learning platform that can be expanded across other disciplines.

    We collaborate with NMBU’s Learning Center on this project.

    BIAS participants: Hilde Vinje and Kathrine Frey Frøslie

  • Flipped classroom – statistics

    Student diversity, both in educational background and cognitive type, creates challenges when teaching introductory statistics in large classroom settings. To address this, we developed a large-scale flipped classroom for STAT100, to create a more adaptive teaching platform than the traditional lecture format. Students can choose their course format by either attending weekly colloquia (and working with fellow students) or by handing in individual assignments. We are analyzing the learning outcomes in light of different cognitive types, and according to what kind of course format students choose. The results will help us adjust our teaching methods to further tailor them to students’ learning capabilities. 

    We collaborate with the National Centre for Science Recruitment at NTNU on this project.

    BIAS participants: Kathrine Frey Frøslie, Hilde Vinje, Solve Sæbø and Trygve Almøy

    Further Reading:

    SæbøS.Almøy, T., Brovold, H. (2015). Does academia disfavor contextual and extraverted students?  Uniped, 38(4): 274–283.

    Vinje, H., Almøy, T., Brovold, H., Sæbø, S. (2019). Adaptive statistical education to motivate and enable a growing and increasingly diverse student population. Proceedings of the Satellite Conference of the International Association for Statistical Education (IASE), 1–5.

  • Project-based statistics (STAT101)

    Since some students are motivated by explorative learning, we have piloted a new course, STAT101, where students can learn statistics through larger projects. In STAT101, students navigate their own way towards finding the resources and learning the statistical methods they need to solve their projects.

    BIAS participants: Hilde Vinje, Kathrine Frey Frøslie, Solve Sæbø and Trygve Almøy






Published 29. oktober 2019 - 10:58 - Updated 30. juni 2020 - 7:49