Thinking and mind tools

Ask us
 Tell us 

3-2-1 Thinking

The 3-2-1 Thinking process is a strategy which you can use with students to help them to focus their thinking. All students need to do is to come up with 3 examples of one element, 2 of another and 1 of a third. It's a good way to summarise content or encourage students to think about their learning. 

For example, you could use this tool to summarise learning at the end of a session, by asking the students to  students to record 3 facts they've learned, 2 questions they have, and one professional connection they can make to the information. 

Other ways to use the tool could be to help students to check how well they understand the content during a session, or to get students to record their thoughts during a class discussion.

Download a template (10 KB) 

Putting it into practice: Application in Health Sciences

The Three-Two-One Approach is effective when used to get students to summarise their learning and think more deeply about various interventions (for example, to come up with three patient considerations for an intervention, two provider considerations, and one technical or administrative consideration.)

Students can also use this process to compare and contrast ideas or processes, by coming up with three similarities, two differences and one question.

The process can be used to help students to focus on readings (three important ideas from the text, two supporting details for each of the ideas and one question about each idea). 

Interesting resources

3-2-1 A reflection and summarising strategy