Positive Effects in Problem-Based Learning

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Positive Effects in Problem-Based Learning

Problem-Based Learning is "Student Centered". This style of learning places most of the responsibility on the students to learn and teach themselves. "Creating assignments and activities that require student input presumably also increases the likelihood of students being motivated to learn." (De Gallow, Grant 2000) With Problem-Based Learning, students are not just sitting behind a desk listening to the teacher lecture, instead they are interacting with the topic using their own ideas to help solve problems. Everyone has a different way of learning which is easier for them. Some of these different types of learning include: visual, hands on , auditory, written, and kinesthetic. The great thing about Problem-Based Learning is that its gives the student the opportunity to learn regardless of what type of learner they are by it covering all of the basic learning styles to fit everyone's needs. "Active, interactive, and collaborative learning on which Problem-Based Learning is based, allows an instructor the rare opportunity to observe students learning process." (De Gallow, Grant 2000) These three types of learning are used in schools all over the world to help prepare students for their health care careers.

Active learning refers to students being actively involved in the discussion by either doing a physical activity or game, brainstorming in groups with other classmates, or presenting ideas in front of the class. With this type learning style the instructor can come up with a fun learning game, a concept map activity, video, or a group project for students to do, either before or after a lecture. Using these activities before a lecture allows the instructor to see how knowledgeable the students are and how well they are able to apply critical thinking skills to solve problems on their own. Using these activities after the lecture, is a great way to test how much the students have learned during the lecture. It also gives them a more hands-on approach to help them better understand the material. One effective and commonly used exercise is the "Think-Pair-Share exercise. In this activity, the instructor gives the students a problem to solve. The students first have to try to solve the problem individually for about 2-5 minutes. This step of the activity is called "Think". After the students come up with their individual solutions, they brainstorm and discuss their ideas with the student sitting next to them. The instructor allows the students to use 3-5 minutes to discuss these ideas. This step of the activity is called "Pair". "Finally the instructor will ask or choose student pairs to share ideas with the whole class." (Mckinney 2010). This final step of the activity is called "Share". Think-Pair- Share, is a fun and very effective way for the students to learn. Another effective form of active learning is the use of concepts maps. Concept maps are written activities that help the student use critical thinking skills in order to solve problems, or to determine what comes next in an activity. There are many different types of concept maps for instructors to use. One concept map is called the Frayer Model. This map allows the instructor to come up with a topic. The student will need to use critical thinking in order to come up with examples and non-examples of that topic and how that topic positively and negatively relates to the real world. Concept maps are a great activity to use before and after the lecture because it helps the students to think about what they know and what they have learned. Active learning is a great way for students to learn because it is entertaining and fun.

Interactive Learning "describes a method of acquiring information through hands on means." (Beam 2010) This type of learning can be done through hands on lab activities, projects, or interactive computer software. Interactive leaning is an effective leaning method for students who learn better...
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