As a sophomore here at Baldwin Wallace, I have more opportunities to take classes, especially in my major, that are more hands on. Here at BW we have what are known as workshops, rather than a normal lecture or lab that most are accustomed to.
I'm currently enrolled in a Journalism Workshop course this semester, and to say the least I love it. It's much more hands on, and although the breadth of work we are required to do is far more than common courses, I have learned more from this workshop class, and the hands on assignments we do, than I have in most classes since I've been here.
Although many lectures are fantastic, and the professors make it very interesting and engaging for students, the difference in lecture and workshop is the hands on experience that each student gets. Often in a lecture students take notes, work in groups occasionally, and take tests every few weeks to recount what they have learned up to that particular point. Workshops on the other hand rarely give students notes, but instead handouts and guidelines on how to do a specific assignment. These type of courses are also very group oriented, not small groups but as a class discussions occur often and the floor is consistently open for argument or questioning. We also don't have any tests in my particular workshop class, but rather a portfolio to turn in at the end of the semester with three news stories we have written throughout the year.
Although you must consistently be responsible, organized, and articulate in your planning I feel that I am learning much quicker, I'm retaining my knowledge, and I'm using the skills I've learned almost everyday which results in much better work. I highly recommend, if possible, that readers attempt to take a workshop class, and experience it at least once. We all learn differently, but sometimes your not sure how much better you can learn until you learn in a way you never have before...just some food for thought.