Research projects are an important tool for both instructing students and assessing whether students have developed critical knowledge and skills for college and career success in a 21stcentury world. Students also have the opportunity to explore their interests, which increases their motivation to learn.
They learn how to develop questions, find, sort and evaluate information, read widely and deeply, analyze, think creatively, write in many different formats, problem solve, and communicate results. Students also learn how to work independently and collaboratively.
Many of the “soft” skills, such as curiosity, perseverance, “grit”, and dealing with failure and frustration are developed while working on a research project. Like the musician or athlete, students who conduct research projects have the opportunity to practice and improve important skills that they don’t normally get to use regularly in traditional classrooms.
Via Rob Hatfield, M.Ed.