Pedagogy and Professional Development

Pirate Teaching: Increasing Student Engagement in Apparel Courses

  • April Elisha Stanley (Iowa State University)


Pirate teaching methods were adapted to construct engaging lessons to draw students to the material. The main purpose was to create new learning experiences in undergraduate apparel courses and improve student engagement in face-to-face classes. Since apparel courses shifted online due to the Covid-19 pandemic, a secondary goal arose: adapting pirate teaching techniques for the online apparel content to increase student engagement in the e-learning setting. Burgess' (2012) triad was utilized for constructing engaging lessons: content, method, and presentation. Student engagement improved in both learning settings. The activities provided visual and verbal formative assessments of students' learning and also increased attendance and participation. It was found that pirate teaching methods can be effectively applied to the apparel context for both face-to-face and online learning environments. These techniques have implications for other disciplines as well.

Keywords: engagement, activities, creative teaching

How to Cite:

Stanley, A. E., (2020) “Pirate Teaching: Increasing Student Engagement in Apparel Courses”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 77(1). doi:



Published on
28 Dec 2020
Peer Reviewed