Welcome to the Shared
Inquiry Learning Center

The Shared Inquiry Method

Shared Inquiry is an active and collaborative search for answers to questions of meaning about a text. It is a research-supported method of learning that promotes deeper thinking through reading, discussion, and writing.

In Shared Inquiry, we provide teachers with a framework that puts focus on a collaborative process of thinking where the teachers and students work together. The goal is to create a community of learners where every student is supported and challenged to find his or her own voice, develop deep understanding, and engage in respectful, civil discourse while learning from each other. Shared Inquiry enhances all the basic language arts skills—reading comprehension, critical thinking, writing, speaking, and listening—and enables students to learn more across the curriculum.

All Great Books professional development is designed to help educators learn, practice, and continuously improve the Shared Inquiry™ method of teaching and learning. Our experienced professional learning consultants have helped thousands of educators use this method with Junior Great Books materials and other curricula. Shared Inquiry empowers teachers to use interpretive, evaluative, and factual questions to help students dig deeper into whatever they are reading so they can express themselves, listen to others, and synthesize new ideas from the input they receive.

Great Books professional development has been carefully designed with the needs of adult learners at the forefront of design, development, and delivery. Learn more about how our offerings align with the principles of Jean Piaget, Malcolm Knowles, and Benjamin Bloom. Our professional learning also incorporates social and emotional learning and shares the goal of helping students develop the skills they need to think critically, appreciate diverse perspectives, communicate, solve problems, and collaborate with others.

We have professional learning courses, coaching, and consultation to fit your needs, whether you are an individual educator or the superintendent of a large district. And we will meet any teacher’s needs, regardless of their level of experience.

In the Shared Inquiry Learning Center, you can:

  • Access in-person, blended, online, and on-demand training for educators
  • Participate in an engaged community of inquiry-based education professionals
  • Take advantage of free resources, such as lesson plans, demonstration videos, and training tools to get you started using the Shared Inquiry method
  • Participate in free events, including free Shared Inquiry discussions for educators
  • Earn Shared Inquiry badges and certificates to track professional development and to share teachers’ ongoing learning with colleagues, administrators, and community

Teachers who learn Shared Inquiry:

  • Engage all students in higher level reading, critical thinking, and thoughtful discussion
  • Integrate critical thinking and social emotional learning into their curriculum
  • Differentiate instruction for a wide range of students’ learning needs and strengths
  • Meet key learning standards through an inquiry-based, collaborative approach

Students who learn Shared Inquiry:

  • Use reading comprehension strategies purposefully
  • Develop their own opinions and claims about a text
  • Learn how to support ideas with textual evidence
  • Create the habit of mind to go beyond initial responses and think more deeply about the issues and themes of a text
  • Develop social emotional intelligence through respectful dialogue and collaboration