Role Of A University Lecturer In The Development Of Students’ Cognition Interest


Problems of enhancing the learning and cognitive activity of students in connection with the development of cognition motivation are considered in the paper. The core components characterizing the formation of cognition interest, as well as its effect on the self-learning drive of students are highlighted. Certain approaches to the content of cognition interest identified during pedagogical and psychological research are shown; the criteria of each of them are disclosed. As an example of the cognition interest development, we consider project activities that facilitate self-motivation for the knowledge acquisition, learning skills, aimed at creating students' personal interest in the educational process. It is proved that as a result of project activities, students acquire several groups of skills, namely, reflective, research, communicative, and a number of other skills. Two key players of project activities are identified – student and teacher. Their interaction is characterized by dialogics, functionality, information and openness. The functionality of the teacher’s activity involves the implementation of managerial actions, such as analysis, goal setting, planning, motivation, organization, control, reflection. The necessity of the teacher’s focused work with the statement of specific tasks for interacting with students at all stages of the project activities is shown. Under working on the project, the teacher performs the functions of an observer, consultant, and tutor, depending on the tasks being implemented. The final part of the paper presents a number of modern educational technologies that contribute to the implementation of students’ cognitive activity in the educational process.

Keywords: Cognition interestpedagogical technologiesproject activitiesreflectionself-learning driveteacher – student interaction


At the present stage of the development of society, the priority tasks of education are not only the formation of an integrated system of universal knowledge, skills, but also the development of students' activity, the ability to acquire and operate knowledge independently, the ability to socialize and adapt future specialists in the labor market successfully. And here the desire and ability to independently acquire knowledge are in inextricable connection and continuity, as an indicator of the developed cognitive interest of the individual.

Cognitive interest of a person is formed in a certain educational environment and is an important factor in improving the learning process and at the same time an indicator of its effectiveness and efficiency. The project method as a means of developing cognitive interest in the history of the subject world has a complex integrated character.

Project activities are effective only in the case of active cooperation between the teacher and the student, which has a positive effect not only on the development of creative abilities, but also on the early formation of professionally significant skills of students. Design technology allows combining all forms of work: individual, pair, and group. Students form several groups of skills with the correct organization of design and research activities: reflective, research, skills of evaluative independence, communicative and a number of others.

The idea of design work lies in a pragmatic focus on the result of solving a specific practically or theoretically significant problem. The result obtained requires further reflection and application in real practice. The teacher’s task is to teach students to think independently, predict the results and possible consequences of various solutions and establish causal relationships (Asmolov & Guseltseva, 2019b).

Challenges to modern education, dictated by changes in the labor market, present challenges for a modern specialist in the systematic, comprehensive development of a person by involvement in educational and cognitive activities, where the teacher acts as an active subject (Vollet et al., 2017). Studies show that it is necessary to intensify and strengthen the cognitive interest of students in the learning process systematically, which ultimately will positively affect not only the learning outcomes, but will also be further developed in professional activities;

Problem Statement

Cognitive interest in the learning process at any level of education has always occupied a special place in modern psychological and pedagogical research. Interest is positioned as the dominant motive of students' cognitive activity, which leads to the study of the justification of its influence both on the entire educational process and on the interaction of its participants. Educational and cognitive activity is interesting for research as a process of active development of a personality capable of self-development and self-improvement (Asmolov & Guseltseva, 2016; Asmolov & Guseltseva, 2019a). In addition, activity is a prerequisite for the formation and development of mental qualities of a person, including critical thinking (Iucu & Platis, 2010; Shcheglova et al., 2019).

The source study base of this research includes scientific publications by domestic and foreign authors on the study of a set of interrelated issues related to pedagogical technologies aimed at the development of critical thinking and methods of reflection. In particular, the statement that the project method stimulates the expansion of students' ideas and concepts in certain problematic situations will be substantiated. A number of authors agree that pedagogical practices and methods used in the educational process encourage students to interact in a group, thereby involving traditionally passive students in active research (Peoples, 2015; Shinners & Franqueiro, 2017). In addition, co-education, which is clearly manifested in project activities, increases the motivation of students, which positively affects the assimilation of educational material (Adams, 2013; Stracke & Kretschmer, 2012).

Emphasis is placed on the need to use technologies aimed at developing social and emotional skills to solve complex problems along with traditional academic training in research on new pedagogical technologies (Ermakov et al., 2019; Kochetkov, 2014; Maillard, 2017; New Vision for Education: Fostering Social and Emotional Learning through Technology, 2016).

Research Questions

One of the main questions of our study is to determine the position of the teacher in the formation of cognitive interest of students. The project method is based on the idea of directing the cognitive activity of students on the result that is achieved in the process of joint work of the teacher and student on the solution of a specific practical problem.

The justification of the issues raised is confirmed by the opinion of employers who argue that modern universities should train specialists not with process but with project thinking.

Purpose of the Study

On the basis of studying the features of the development of cognitive interest, it is necessary to identify effective means of its development among first-year students studying at the Don State Technical University in studying the disciplines of the humanitarian cycle, as well as identifying the role and position of the teacher in this process.

Research Methods

In this work, both theoretical and empirical research methods were involved. Analysis, synthesis and analogy were used in order to systematize the studied material. Empirical methods such as interrogation and observation were used for a deeper study of the problem.


The formation of the necessary skills represents a holistic system, the effective implementation of which is ensured on the one hand by the totality of all taught disciplines, and on the other, by the professional and cultural level of the teaching staff.

The program of the discipline “Business Communication” was considered in confirmation of this statement, which is aimed at developing such skills as interacting with people, groups and the mass audience, participating in discussions, and negotiating skills. We will focus on debates as one from pedagogical technologies used in practical classes aimed at developing critical thinking, logic, skills of civilized discussion and democratic dialogue as part of this study.

According to researchers, a debate is defined as a form of interaction of at least two groups in the form of an exchange of opinions and different views on a given problem (arguments and counterarguments). As a result, it is not winners and losers that are determined, but the degree of effectiveness of the presented arguments and counterarguments is assessed.

Debate as a method of project training is represented by a number of interrelated stages: problem statement, goal setting, implementation and reflection. And at each stage, the teacher performs the appropriate functions aimed at the successful completion of the project process.

Let's consider each stage in more detail. The project’s problems are inextricably linked with the research topic and, being the starting point of the planned work, shaping its relevance. Students were offered several topics affecting the laws of development of society, the life values of youth, such as: “Everyone should play sports”, “Children should use the experience and knowledge of their parents”, “Good study is the key to a successful life in the future”. At this stage, the tasks were solved to identify students’ understanding of the discussion topic, and also the need for additional information was determined. The teacher’s task was to provide consulting assistance not so much with a technical search for the necessary information but with the ability to navigate it, classify, analyze and verify.

The purpose of the study is the end result that the student wants to achieve upon completion of the work. In the debate, there is an immersion in the semantic space that positively affects the development of the ability to consciously apply this knowledge in real life. At this stage, the student demonstrates skills in hypothesizing and finding acceptable solutions to the problem. It is of interest to organize work on the search for arguments (counterarguments). Initially, each of the participants in the student group independently identified strong arguments, and then, as a result of the group discussions those arguments were determined with which most students agreed. Thus, work was ongoing to rally the group, develop team principles for joint activities and demonstrate partnerships during the discussion already at the initial stage.

The implementation of the project is the most independent part of the student’s work. During the debate, a formalized exchange of information is carried out, reflecting the polar points of view on the same problem, with the aim of developing communication skills, a culture of collective dialogue. The teacher continues to fulfill his functions, but with a different content (Faeth, 2020). And here it is appropriate to compare teaching activities with elements of tutoring. In the classical understanding, a tutor is a teacher, mentor who carries out activities to accompany a student according to an individual educational program. Existing opinions of teachers and psychologists reveal the concept of tutoring, including as an accompaniment in the implementation of individual not only educational programs, but also educational research and design work. The final stage of the design work is associated with the reflection and evaluation activities of the student.

It should be noted that only the opinion of the teacher or group is not enough for the adequacy of the assessment of the work performed, the student’s self-esteem is no less important, which indicates that students learn cognitive and personal reflection, the ability to understand the reasons for success (failure), and most importantly, the ability to act constructively even in situations of failure. Self-esteem, being an important regulator of personality behavior, on the one hand stimulates its cognitive activity; on the other hand, it mobilizes the creative potential of the student. The teacher’s task at this stage is to encourage students to self-actualize and predict the consequences of their own actions.

The most effective is group reflection, which makes it possible to maximize the use of pedagogical tools (Chen et al., 2017). An important means of implementing a group reflexive process is feedback, where discussion participants get the opportunity to demonstrate communication skills, such as the ability to conduct a discussion, the ability to defend their point of view and the ability to find a compromise.

The role of judges was offered to students not involved in the search for arguments (counterarguments) in the debate. Evaluation sheets were compiled with criteria for evaluating participation in the debate as a result of a joint discussion with the teacher (Table 01 ).

Table 1 -
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As it turned out, the debate not only forms the ability of critical expression, but also the critical perception of other people's expressed thoughts.

In our opinion, the final stage is of particular interest for identifying the role of the teacher in the students' project activities, since the conditions and format of its implementation allow one of the paradigms of modern education to be realized - personality-oriented. The teacher’s relations with students should be built solely on the basis of trust, openness and dialogue to create a positive atmosphere.

We agree with the opinion of those scientists who argue that only a teacher who has a high level of development of managerial reflection, which includes, among other things, awareness of one’s own actions, can teach reflections.

Reflection allows evaluating the intellectual, emotional state of each participant in communication. The members of the group consistently discuss various options for solving the assigned project tasks, which encourages students to creatively understand their own individual experience, and, ultimately, achieve optimal self-realization.


A number of modern educational technologies are used in order to implement the cognitive activity of students in the educational process. Those are of interest that contribute to the development of critical thinking, analytical and evaluative activities, self-esteem and introspection.

Project work in a higher educational institution has its own characteristics. First, in most cases it is of a research nature. Secondly, this type of educational activity is always oriented towards independent work of students. The role of the teacher in this case is aimed not at regulation, but at the focus of the process.

The teacher must take into account a number of circumstances when organizing project activities. Firstly, students should not be offered assignments for which they lack the minimum necessary knowledge and skills. Thus, a certain level of student readiness for the implementation of project activities is determined. The teacher either independently determines the topic of work, or jointly discusses the topic proposed by the student and, if necessary, adjusts it. As we see the nature of the teacher’s activities clearly fits into the model of modern competency-based education.

The effectiveness of students' design and research work is to stimulate educational motivation, which is currently one of the most acute problems of education. In this study, the technology of “Debate” is considered as evidence of the thesis.

A significant role in the development and formation of cognitive interest among students is played by the teacher, who develops and introduces innovative educational technologies in the educational process. Project activity transforms a teacher from a translator of finished knowledge into an organizer of cognitive activity of students. Moreover, the teacher uses various forms of active interaction with students at all stages of project activities.


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Chubova, E., & Bylkova, S. (2021). Role Of A University Lecturer In The Development Of Students’ Cognition Interest. In E. V. Toropova, E. F. Zhukova, S. A. Malenko, T. L. Kaminskaya, N. V. Salonikov, V. I. Makarov, A. V. Batulina, M. V. Zvyaglova, O. A. Fikhtner, & A. M. Grinev (Eds.), Man, Society, Communication, vol 108. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 1393-1399). European Publisher.