Ask discussion questions that can have multiple perspectives to facilitate student contributions.


  • Prepare discussion questions for class that could have multiple perspectives or multiple reasonable responses.
  • Let students know that there is more than one reasonable response.
  • When relevant, ask students questions that allow them to build upon their experiences, which can connect the content to their life and allow them to share their unique perspective.
  • The Center for Teaching and Learning at Stanford provides recommendations for creating discussion questions. They recommend asking students questions that require analysis, comparing and contrasting, and exploring cause and effect. They discourage questions that are yes-no questions, unclear, or leading.


  • If you ask students to answer questions that have multiple right answers, they can feel more confident in contributing.