Traditional teaching methods rely solely on the use of textbooks, but teaching effectiveness assessment methods have demonstrated that most students taught by this method do not absorb the course content up to the expected level. Multiple researchers have introduced nontraditional teaching methods, but there is no scientific consensus on the best nontraditional teaching methods that are tailored to learners’ abilities while most effectively addressing the course objectives. Therefore, the goal of this review was to address the following questions across all engineering disciplines, based on learners’ abilities and the course objectives: (a) What are the benefits of nontraditional teaching methods? and (b) How would you categorize the benefits of nontraditional teaching methods? A qualitative review was conducted to achieve these goals, and the initial search for papers, using relevant keywords, resulted in more than 2000 peer-reviewed articles that were published between 2000 and 2017. A total of 125 peer-reviewed articles pertaining to the most frequently studied nontraditional teaching methods were comprehensively studied and analyzed. The analysis resulted in practical guidelines, including a list of the benefits of the five studied nontraditional teaching methods (flipped classroom, gamification, case study, self-learning, and social media) belonging to four categories: technical/professional, personal skills/ability, personal attitude, and time and space. Based on the results, the authors established significant guidelines for instructors who aim to optimize learners’ achievements by adopting the most effective teaching styles, based on their course objectives and the learners’ abilities.
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