Leadership magazine May/June 2015 V 44 No 5 - Page 24
Problem-based learning and teaching
When we begin with student interest and
tackle learning opportunities from that
place, a continuum begins to emerge regarding how much of the learning we hand over
to the students.
With a problem-based technique to teaching and learning, on one end of the spectrum you have the traditional set-up where
the teacher identifies the learning objective,
the process by which the objective will be explored and the prescribed outcome. On the
far end of that continuum is where students
are presented with a problem and define the
learning objective (problem to be answered),
process and outcome.
It is on this end of the continuum that
teaching and learning look dramatically different. For the Poly Motocross Project, we
chose the student-driven approach through
a problem-based learning construct to assess how students and teachers responded
to this radical shift in instructional delivery
and learning design. A unique balance occurred with the project both from a teacher
and learner perspective.
Student inquiry: Eight essential tasks
Students were challenged with eight essential tasks to develop the guiding questions, process identification and outcome attainment. Newman (2005) quantifies these
1. Explore the problem: clarify terms and
concepts that are not understandable, create
hypotheses and identify issues.