Problem-Based teaching and Learning Prepared by: -Ahmed sosal A. University of Khartoum Dept. Of English and Linguistics April 2011
(The Motivation to Learn Begins with a Problem)
Problem based learning(PBL):Historical Origins PBL has been used since the 1950’s. While it originated in universities today, PBL is used extensively in elementary, secondary and tertiary education institutions worldwide, and has also been adopted in various fields of professional training, such as nursing, engineering and architecture, among many others.
PBL was pioneered in the health sciences at McMaster University in the late 1960's and subsequently it has been adopted by other medical school programs (Barrows, 1996) and also been adapted for undergraduate instruction.
Until recently the PBL approach has flourished mainly in medical and professional schools. Slowly the sciences in general have begun taking it up, and even more slowly, the humanities.
What is it? Problem-Based Learning (PBL) is a total approach to education that challenges students to learn through an active engagement in real life problems. Problem-based learning is learning that results from working with problems. Official descriptions generally describe it as "an instructional strategy in which students confront contextualized, ill-structured problems and strive to find meaningful solutions."
Problem-based learning is an instructional method that challenges students to “learn to learn”, working cooperatively in groups to seek solutions to real world problems (Duch et al., 2001).
In a problem-based learning (PBL) model, students engage complex, challenging problems and collaboratively work toward their resolution. PBL is about students connecting disciplinary knowledge to real-world problems—the motivation to solve a problem becomes the motivation to learn.
Why this approach? Recent research concluded that traditional teacher-centered learning models are more likely to result in surface level learning. Additionally, research indicates that higher quality learning is more likely to come from a morestudent-centered approach to study (Entwistle 1998).
Based on the statement mentioned abovewe need tochange our teaching approachfrom a teacher-centered model to a more student-centered one in order to encourage our students to adopt a deeplevelapproach to their learning, and to encourage them to mastera competence in problem solving. Thus, the solution can be Problem-based learning (PBL) which places greater emphasis onstudent’s self-directed learning (SDL) and training students’research ability while learning.
Teacher’s role: In problem-based classrooms of language learning, the teacher acts as a cognitive coach or facilitator of activities that students carry out themselves so their role include the following steps: . Preteach · Introduce the Problem and the Language Needed to Work on It · Group Students and Provide Resources · Observe and Support · Follow Up and Assess Progress
With PBL, your teacher presents you with a problem, not lectures or assignments or exercises. Since you are not handed "content", your learning becomes active in the sense that you discover and work with content that you determine to be necessary to solve the problem.
Examples : Several medical schools have incorporated problem-based learning into their curricula, using real patient cases to teach students how to think like a clinician. More than eighty percent of medical schools in the United States now have some form of problem-based learning in their programs.
Maastricht University offers its whole program in PBL format only, as does the University of Limerick Graduate entry medical school in Ireland.
Characteristics of PBL are: The key characteristics of PBL are that it involves team- work and communication skills, a problem-solving capacity, critical, analytical and creative, as well as individual research. Learning is driven by challenging, open-ended, ill-defined and ill-structured problems. Students generally work in collaborative groups. Teachers take on the role as "facilitators" of learning.
Basic Steps of PBL: students divided into groups real problem is presented and discussed students identify what is known, what information is needed, and what strategies or next steps to take individuals research different issues, gather resources.
Advantages of PBL: greater recall of knowledge, retention interdisciplinary, can require accessing and using information from a variety of subject domains; better integration of knowledge development of life-long learning skills: how to research, how to communicate in groups, how to handle problems increased motivation, interest in subject areas increased student-student interaction, and student-instructor interaction.
become more flexible in processing information and meeting obligations .
Develops critical thinking, writing, and communication skills
Demonstrates the power of working cooperatively
practice skills that you will need after your education
Disadvantages of PBL: Unfortunately no single education strategy is perfect for all educational situations and PBL has several significant disadvantages. One of the disadvantages that has been reported in relation to the PBL process is that it is a very different teaching process to the one that students have already received and, as a result, it can be stressful and disorienting (Mills, 2008).
Knowledge acquired through PBL being less organized than knowledge acquired through traditional learning.
There is a difficulty of training facilitators and the scarcity of teaching faculty with the skills of facilitating rather than the skills of traditional teaching.
Takes longer time in contrast to the other approaches. This can be particularly problematic for time-poor faculty and teachers who are being asked to teach and learn within an increasingly crowded curriculum.