At the Engaging Minds blog, we’ve shared students’ thoughts on a variety of topics related to their college experience, from their most successful study habits, to their strategies for achieving their academic goals, to the role their instructors play in motivating them to succeed in their courses. Their perspectives provide us with a fresh look into the life of today’s college students.

In that same spirit, Cengage Learning recently ran the “Instructor for a Day” video contest, which prompted students to show us how they would engage their students if they were an instructor for a day. We received over one hundred entries, and we thoroughly enjoyed watching the students’ creative, insightful (and in many cases moving or funny) video responses.

We recently announced the winners of the “Instructor for a Day” video contest. As a follow up, we asked our winners to expand their thoughts on the topic of student engagement.

In today’s featured video, grand-prize winner Matthew Abeler, student at University of Northwestern of St. Paul, presents his viewpoint. He says: “If you really want to be a highly motivated student, pushing yourself to do the best that you can do, it’s all about learning and discovering, and the grades will follow suit.”

In addition, he shares his thoughts on creating engaging videos that capture students’ attention, and he closes by describing the important role that his instructors have played in his spurring on his growth as a learner.

How do you encourage students to keep on learning and discovering throughout their college careers (and beyond)? Share your ideas in the comments section below.