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How to promote learning Through Problem Based Learning

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How to promote learning Through Problem Based Learning Prof. Dr Lorna Uden Faculty of Computing, Engineering and Technology. Staffordshire University – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: How to promote learning Through Problem Based Learning


1
How to promote learning Through Problem Based
Learning
  • Prof. Dr Lorna Uden
  • Faculty of Computing, Engineering and Technology.
  • Staffordshire University
  • The Octagon.
  • Stafford ST18 0AD
  • E-mail L.uden_at_staffs.ac.uk

2
Published by IGI Global ltwww.igi-pub.comgt ISBN
1-59140-744-3 (Hardback) ISBN 1-5940-745-1 (Soft
cover) ISBN 1-59140-746-X (E-book).
3
  • First year experience and drop out
  • 40 drop out is normal in USA
  • Reason may be mismatch between students
    expectations and perception and reality of first
    year undergraduate experience
  • Norman It is strange that we expect students to
    learn yet seldom teach them about learning. We
    expect them to solve problems yet seldom teach
    them problem solving.
  • How to help students to learn ?
  • By making learning fun and enjoyable!

4
  • Three issues
  • Concern for students
  • Making learning realistic
  • Helping students learn.

5
  • Concern for students
  • Take an interest in student
  • Show student you care
  • Student needs to know he/she can trust you
  • Motivate the student
  • Instil in student the desire to take ownership of
    his/her learning
  • Be role model to student.

6
  • Making learning realistic
  • Student should be told of the objectives and
    criteria of assessment
  • Learning must be realistic
  • Students should be actively involved in learning
    activities
  • Students should have understanding of the
    learning process
  • Create tools and activities under which students
    thinking can be revealed - a process that
    involves inquiry, dialogue and skill building.

7
  • Helping students to learn
  • HIGHERORDER THINKING SKILLS
  • Skills that can be applied across subject matter
    domains.
  • Often referred to as generic skills.
  • Tend to be more complex and take longer to
    acquire than domain-specific skills.
  • Have a recall aspect in that it may entail
    remembering the sequence of several activities.
  • Have an understanding aspect in that certain
    understandings are often necessary to transfer
    the skills to such diverse situations across
    subject matter domains.
  • Have an application aspect in that one must learn
    to generalise the skills to various, previously
    un-encountered sets of inputs or conditions.

8
  • Hence, to learn to do higher-level thinking (e.g.
    problem solving),
  • it is helpful to be taught appropriate procedures
    (identify the goal, analyse the givens, etc.)
  • and understandings (what approaches or strategies
    work best in different situations).
  • Higher-order thinking skills can be categorised
    into two main groups learning strategies and
    problem solving.
  • Teaching higher-order thinking skills
  • Typically, there are two methods of teaching
    higher-order thinking skills
  • (i) Detached training and
  • (ii) Embedded training.

9
  • Learning strategies
  • Referred to as cognitive strategies,
  • Encourage a deeper level of cognitive processing
    and thus helps to promote the acquisition,
    retention and transfer of knowledge, e.g. an
    analogy may be used as an embedded instructional
    strategy to make the content more meaningful.
  • Learning strategies that can be used across
    subject domains are
  • (a) the chunking or organising strategies
  • (b) the spatial strategies
  • (c) bridging strategies
  • (d) general-purpose strategies.

10
  • Problem solving skills
  • The most important higher-order thinking skills.
  • Involve the use and application of skills for
    finding solutions, making decisions, and thinking
    inventively.
  • Effective problem solving involves a number of
    specific skills that include
  • problem identification/posing (including problem
    representation),
  • distinguishing relevant from irrelevant
    information and understanding the problem well
    enough to know what information is missing,
    searching for appropriate information (both
    existing knowledge and new information),

11
  • identifying and evaluating alternative outcomes
    and solution strategies,
  • knowing when and how to try out the selected
    alternative
  • and the ability to use both general and
    domain-specific strategies.

12
  • Constructivist principles
  • Provide authentic activities (Spiro et al 1992)
  • Provide access to expert performance and the
    modelling process
  • Provide multiple roles and perspectives
  • Support collaborative construction of knowledge
  • Promote reflection
  • Promote articulation
  • Provide coaching and scaffolding
  • Provide for authentic assessment of learning
    within the task
  • Provide exploration
  • (Collins, Brown and others 1990 Duffy 1994,
    Jonassen 1995).

13
Students need information literacy
  • Information literacy involves the abilities to
  • know when there is a need for information
  • identify information needed to address a given
    problem issue
  • locate the needed information
  • organise the information
  • use the information to effectively address the
    problem or issue.

14
Paradigm shift from traditional learning models
to Problem-based learning model.
  • Traditional learning model.
  • Teacher as expert model
  • textbook as primary source
  • facts as primary
  • information is packaged
  • emphasis on product
  • assessment is quantitative.
  • Problem-based learning.
  • Teacher as facilitator/guide
  • variety of sources/media
  • question as primary
  • information is discovered
  • emphasis on process
  • assessment is quantitative/qualitative

15
Problems Facing Students
  • Students find learning difficult.
  • Students tend to memorise facts, but fail to
    explain observed phenomena and solve real world
    problems, or to think critically.
  • Lecture style teaching is NOT effective.
  • Need to develop strategies to teach thinking
    and problem-solving skills

16
Now What?
?
17
Problem-based learning (PBL)
  • PBL, according to Barrows is, " ... the
    learning which results from the process of
    working towards the understanding of, or
    resolution of, a problem." Barrows describes
    the main educational goals as
  • To develop students' thinking or reasoning skills
    (problem solving, meta-cognition, critical
    thinking) and
  • To help the students become independent,
    self-directed learners (learning to learn,
    learning management).

18
In Problem-Based Learning, teachers encourage
students to
  • be active, not passive in learning
  • engage in inquiry approach to learning
  • accept responsibility for their own learning
  • develop problem-solving, decision-making and
    evaluation skills and
  • develop a broad outlook on the world.

19
  • Students develop the ability to
  • recognise bias
  • make systematic comparisons
  • form and defend opinions
  • identify and develop alternative solutions
  • solve problems independently and
  • use responsible behaviour.

20
  • The purpose of PBL is to produce students who
    will
  • Engage a challenge (problem, complex task, and
    situation) with initiative and enthusiasm
  • Reason effectively, accurately, and creatively
    from an integrated, flexible, usable knowledge
    base
  • Monitor and assess their own adequacy to achieve
    a desirable outcome given a challenge
  • Address their own perceived inadequacies in
    knowledge and skills effectively and efficiently
  • Collaborate effectively as a member of a team
    working to achieve a common goal.

21
In PBL
  • Students spend time in learning by identifying
    what they need to know, by finding out, by
    talking to each other and by applying their new
    knowledge
  • The primary aim is learning itself not the
    completion of the project the project is the
    means to the end
  • It is different from standard project work in
    that the ways in which the students are
    encouraged to tackle the problem are designed to
    encourage learning in a structured manner (albeit
    with substantial learner control)

22
  • The key ingredients of PBL are
  • the problem as the focus of learning
  • learning as the purpose of the problem
  • the problem as the integrator of concepts and
    skills
  • commitment to self-learning
  • PBL is typically used in teamwork and small group
    situations as this encourages the development of
    reflective abilities

23
  • PBL encourages independent learning and deeper
    understanding of the material rather than
    superficial coverage, giving students practice in
    tackling engaging problems and defining their own
    gaps in understanding of the context of those
    problems
  • the small group setting used in PBL encourages an
    inquisitive and detailed look at all issues,
    concepts and principles contained within the
    problem

24
  • The time spent outside of the group facilitates
    the development of skills such as literature
    retrieval, critical appraisal of available
    information and the seeking of opinions of peers
    and specialists
  • PBL provides students with the opportunity to
    develop many skills including appreciating the
    diversity of inputs from different group members,
    time management, information retrieval,
    communication, and self-managed learning all
    critical for the practising software engineer.

25
  • PBL is powerful because
  • it is a learning environment that embodies most
    of the principles that we know improve learning
    active, cooperating, getting prompt feedback,
    tailored to students learning performance with
    student empowerment and accountability
  • it forces students to learn the fundamental
    principles of the subject in the context of
    needing it to solve a problem
  • it offers an opportunity to practice, use and
    even develop such processing skills as problem
    solving, interpersonal, group and team skills,
    the ability to cope with change, lifelong or
    self-directed learning skills and self assessment
    skills.

26
  • Benefits of PBL include
  • increased retention of data
  • integration of knowledge
  • life-long learning motivation to learn
  • development of reasoning and critical thinking
    skills
  • development of communication and interpersonal
    skills
  • development of the ability to work effectively in
    a team.

27
  • Give the learner ownership of the process used to
    develop a solution
  • Design the learner environment to support and
    challenge testing ideas against alternative views
    and alternative contexts
  • Provide opportunity for, and support reflection
    on both the context learned and the learning
    process.
  • PBL needs to be well designed and the tutor
    employing the method needs intensive preparation
    through hands-on educational experiences

28
  • Barrows states
  • "The ability of the tutor to use facilitory
    teaching skills during small group learning
    process is the major determinant of the quality
    and success of any educational methods aimed at
    1) developing students' thinking or reasoning
    skills (problem solving, meta-cognition, critical
    thinking) as they learn, and 2) helping them to
    become independent, self-directed learners
    (learning to learn, learning management)"
  • It is important to train tutors to adopt a new
    framework for the classroom when operating in PBL
    environments.

29
Personal Experiences
  • The following is some of the feedback from
    students.
  • "PBL helps me how to solve problems, how to
    question myself on what and why I do certain
    things. It makes learning a very enjoyable
    process."
  • "I learned more with the group than I would have
    individually"
  • "PBL is the best thing I ever learned in my
    life."
  • "I have learned how to identify big issues which
    are relevant to the problem."
  • "I understand better by having to explain to the
    other members of the group."

30
  • Scott Dow
  • BSc (Hons) Computing Science
  • The PBL module taught me a completely new way to
    teach and learn. Using PBL is a very difficult
    concept to grasp early-on but, having learnt it,
    the value of it is immediately apparent. For the
    basis of our module we were split into groups
    along with students with many differing
    backgrounds and cultures. We were then set a
    task that would ordinarily be much too difficult
    to complete on our own. This forces the group to
    work together to solve that task.
  • My own project was implemented using PBL in the
    structure. This allowed me as an individual to
    also apply this model to my own work. In doing
    so I feel that I was able to produce a project
    that was far above anything I could have produced
    without PBL. It is my opinion that this module
    should be compulsory for every entry student at
    university as, equipped with this knowledge from
    the beginning students would be able to perform
    much, much better throughout their time in
    education.
  • PBL also allows for much better retention of the
    course materials. During the exam I had little
    or no difficulty in recalling what I needed to
    know to answer the questions. Speaking to my
    fellow students they also felt the same way. It
    seemed as if the exam was easier, when in fact,
    with hindsight it was just that our knowledge was
    better having learnt it for ourselves.
  • So, as a final thought I would recommend PBL to
    anyone considering taking the subject. It will
    equip you with a means to learn that is very
    different, but also much better than anything you
    will have experienced previously. Although it
    involves much more work, in the long-term you
    will reap the benefits of this method. Already,
    the courseware I implemented using the methods
    discussed have seen improvements in the students
    using it at Clough Hall Technology School. I
    will continue to use the methods, not only in
    teaching but in my own personal and professional
    development. This is, without a doubt, the
    single most valuable subject I have studied at
    university in four years and anyone not taking it
    has truly missed out on a very valuable
    experience.

31
  • Mathew Cartwight
  • BSc (Hons) Computing Science
  • From a more personal opinion this module has
    helped me complete my final year dissertation at
    university. My background has not been in
    computing and it was a struggle to meet the
    standards required of me, but after undertaking
    the PBL module, I have now completed a final year
    dissertation which I honestly did not think was
    possible.

32
  • Sajid Bashir
  • BSc (Hons) Internet Technology student
  • Overall I can confidently say that I have
    acquired a skill that I will use for the rest of
    my life. I knew that when I came to university I
    will walk away with many skills but not such a
    beneficial skill as PBL. PBL has provided me with
    a skill that has made me a confident person, it
    has provided me with the required knowledge I
    needed before I undertake a full time job. One of
    the things I was dreading after university was
    taking on a job, i thought I might not be able to
    achieve the tasks that were given to me. However,
    now that I have acquired this skill of PBL I can
    confidently say that I am looking forward to the
    working world.

33
  • Asif Khalil
  • BSc Computing Science Student
  • At first this method of learning seemed very
    difficult and challenging because it was a
    completely new approach. At that time I did not
    realise how useful PBL will be, not only for the
    given problem but also how the same method could
    be applied to other areas of my studies,
    fundamentally in tackling my final year project.
    The research was then challenged by being
    thoroughly questioned in every aspect, this
    demonstrated what knowledge I had learned and
    understood. I found this method of learning very
    effective in increasing self motivation as I
    enjoyed facing the challenge, as well as
    increasing the knowledge gained on a wider scope.
  • My final year project which was an Interactive
    Training Package for Hanson Building Products
    Hoveringham, adopted the PBL method. My final
    year project supervisor challenged me on the
    research around the problem area which resulted
    in a successful project. On reflection PBL has
    helped me to improve many of my existing skills
    including independent research and linking
    different areas of research by recognising the
    key factors. This has aided in good time
    management and improving my organisation skills
    as I was able to recognise at a very early stage
    what type of research was required to solve the
    problem hence, resulting in solving the project
    efficiently and effectively.

34
  • Khoo Kok Lung
  • BSc (Hons) Computing Science
  • Unlike other module class that I have attended
    before, I felt that this module is not only
    talking about a particular subject area but it
    broadly teaches doing proper research, guides me
    in handling my FYP wholly and helps me to find
    and improve the way I learn and study. Having
    attended this lesson I also have learnt
    articulating with a group of my friends and the
    lecturer, giving me a lot of knowledge in gaining
    and improving critical thinking skills in the
    process of struggling with the actual problem.
    During the project development, PBL have helped
    me to develop critical thinking skills where I
    can
  • Clearly define a problem
  • Develop alternative theories
  • Access, evaluate, and utilize data from a variety
    of sources
  • Alter theories given new information
  • Develop clearly stated solutions that fit the
    problem and its inherent conditions, based upon
    information and clearly clarified reasoning.

35
  • Long-term benefits
  • "Confronted with limited information, I use the
    various problem-solving techniques taught in ISD
    to provide consultation for my clients."
  • "The ISD module was very useful to me ... in
    order to build our two working prototypes in
    time...
  • "As software engineers, ISD has equipped us to be
    better team players, ... to master new languages
    and software tools."
  • "I personally found the ISD module extremely
    useful, particularly the principles of
    Problem-Based Learning, which I still use to
    tackle day-to-day research problems."

36
Conclusion
  • Today, students learn in an information age
  • New technology will not automatically
    revolutionise learning, we need to change our
    learning paradigm
  • Problem-based learning provides a practical means
    of contributing to the long-established
    educational goal of individualising the learning
    process.
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