Flash mobs assemble in public spaces to dance, protest or do battle with lightsabers. And at the University of Virginia, thanks to Laura Nelson, they gather to learn. Once or twice a week, students at the state’s flagship public university collect in some idle classroom or lounge for a “flash seminar,” an ad hoc performance of pedagogy, reports the Washington Post. The time and place, professor and students are always different. But the goal never varies: “to find learning outside the classroom,” said Nelson, 22, a senior from Westwood, Mass., who is majoring in political and social thought. “To find other people who really value being a student.”

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