Teaching Teaching & Understanding Understanding

20-minute Award-Winning Short-Film about Constructive Alignment

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"Teaching Teaching & Understanding Understanding" is a 20-minute award-winning short-film about teaching at university and higher-level educational institutions. It is based on the Theory of Constructive Alignment and The SOLO Taxonomy developed by Professor John Biggs. The film delivers a foundation for understanding what a teacher needs to do in order to make sure all types of students actually learn what the teacher intends.

Watch the Film

Parts 1+2 (1/3: 8'12") Part 3 (2/3: 6'18") Part 4 (3/3: 6'00")


Other Languages

The film is available in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, German, and Danish:
Lang \ Part  (1/3)   (2/3)   (3/3) 
🇺🇸 English: EN-1 EN-2 EN-3
🇫🇷 French: FR-1 FR-2 FR-3
🇪🇸 Spanish: ES-1 ES-2 ES-3
🇧🇷 Portuguese:      PO-1 PO-2 PO-3
🇮🇹 Italian: IT-1 IT-2 IT-3
🇩🇪 German: DE-1 DE-2 DE-3
🇩🇰 Danish: DK-1 DK-2 DK-3


DVD Cover: Jørgen Sparre


Claus Brabrand
Foto: Søren Kjeldgaard


Writer:   Claus Brabrand
Director:   Claus Brabrand
Producers:   Claus Brabrand, Jacob Andersen
Editor:   Jacob Andersen, Claus Brabrand
Camera:   Jacob Andersen
Light:   Jacob Andersen
Sound:   Jacob Andersen
Music:   "CrimeScene" by Mikkel Eskesen (MonoLogo AudioDesign)
3D Graphics:   Henrik Hovgaard
2D Graphics:   Claus Brabrand, Jacob Andersen
Casting:   Claus Brabrand
Narration:   Richard Raskin
Cinematic Advisor:    Richard Raskin
Didactic Advisors:   Simon Olling Rebsdorf, Torben K. Jensen



In order of appearance...:
(the) SUSAN (strategy) ..... Doina Bucur
(the) ROBERT (strategy) ..... Rune Thorbek
Dean ..... Erik Meineche Schmidt
Level 1 Teacher ..... Mogens Nielsen
"Good" Level 2 Teacher ..... Henrik Bærbak Christensen
"Bad" Level 2 Teacher ..... Michael E. Caspersen
"Entertainer" Teacher ..... Lars Arge
Interviewed Student #1 ..... Lea Troels Møller Pedersen
Interviewed Student #2 ..... Michael Westergaard
Didactics Expert ..... Torben K. Jensen
SOLO 1 Student ..... Dennis Decker Jensen
SOLO 3 Student ..... Anne Aasborg
SOLO 4 Student ..... Allan Andersen
Level 3 Teacher ..... Hanne Leth Andersen


Extras: Andreas K. Carlsen, Brian B. Christensen, Allan Hansen, Anders Hesselund Jensen, Clemens N. Klokmose, Per Nielsen, Amir Salihefendic, Mathias Romme Schwarz, and Thomas Vestergaard.

Credits (DVD)


IN 179 WORDS...

  • "Teaching Teaching & Understanding Understanding" is an award-winning film about university and tertiary teaching generally. We follow Susan and Robert in their studies. Susan is a model student using learning activities that deepen her understanding; Robert uses low level activities that only just scrape him a pass. The teaching challenge is to engage Robert to study at a deep level too. The key is "Constructive Alignment", a design for teaching developed by John Biggs, which builds our knowledge of how humans learn into the design of teaching. The learning activities needed to achieve the intended outcomes are embedded in both teaching and assessment. Robert now has the support and incentive to learn like Susan does.

  • Filmed through the eyes of Robert, Susan and their teachers, this DVD is a joy to watch. It is used in universities around the world for teaching teaching to new teachers, for providing a theoretical foundation for experienced teachers, and for provoking debate about what good teaching is. Lasting 20 minutes, it has subtitles available in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, German, and Danish.

    -- by Professor John Biggs, author of "Teaching for Quality Learning at University".  


IN 425 WORDS...

  • "Teaching Teaching & Understanding Understanding" is a 20-minute award-winning short-film about teaching at university and higher-level educational institutions. The film looks at higher-level education from three different perspectives; the student's perspective, the teacher's perspective, and the perspective towards the subject matter being taught and learned. Finally, all these insights are integrated - and the film presents one of the most important insights from research in the area of teaching/learning; namely, "Constructive Alignment" (developed by John Biggs).

  • In the film, we follow two prototypical student strategies, personified as "Susan" and "Robert", who have very different motivations for being at university. Susan is internally motivated - and attends university in order to learn exciting new things and skills. Robert is externally motivated - and his goal is, not necessarily to learn, but to pass exams, get a degree, and get a decent job. We follow the two students (student strategies) through their endeavors at university and the film traces them through the three perspectives of the film (mentioned earlier).

  • In addition to presenting "models of students" on which teachers may act, the film also presents a categorization of different types of teachers according to their main teaching focus, presents taxonomical models of different cognitive levels of understanding (with concrete examples), looks at how we humans acquire new knowledge and competences, and how to use all this to understand concretely what a teacher can do in order to make sure both types of students actually learn what he or she wants them to.

  • The genre of the film is "edutainment" - a contraction of EDU(cation) and (enter)TAINMENT: with primary emphasis on the EDU part; however, the film employs substantial and carefully dosed portions of humour in order to engage the viewer, to provoke reflection, and to make it a joy to watch.

  • The film is already in use by teaching/learning units at various universities and institutions around the world, for teaching teaching to new teachers - and to "upgrade" and provide a theoretical foundation for experienced teachers. The film is primarily intended for educational development units and for teachers, but students will also take away valuable insights and knowledge from it (which may positively impact their learning behavior).

  • We expect the film to have the strongest impact when used in a learning context. It is excellent for "big-screen presentation" as a basis for and to start a debate about teaching. The DVD includes a menu and subtitles in the following seven languages: English, French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, German, and Danish.


Structure of the Film

🇩🇰 Dansk   /   🇺🇸 English   /   🇧🇷 Português   /   🇫🇷 Français   /   🇪🇸 Español   /   🇮🇹 Italiano   /   🇩🇪 Deutsch