PBL and mixed-background groups on Master’s programmes

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Abstract

This article presents the main findings of an applied research project, which studied student experiences of the challenges and opportunities of Problem Based Learning (PBL) in two master programmes (MPs) at Aalborg University (AAU) characterised by diverse student groups, who bring different educational backgrounds, skills and experiences to the table. Research shows that PBL holds a potential for integrating and promoting learning outcomes for diverse student population, but also that heterogeneity can have negative influence on group dynamics and collaboration central in PBL, but how students experience this is under-researched. The investigation shows that diversity in terms of age differences and varieties in educational backgrounds are experienced both as challenges in teaching situations, but also as an opportunity to increase student
learning over time. The study concludes with recommendations for practical alterations of the introduction to and conditions for the PBL model.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Problem Based Learning in Higher Education
Volume6
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)71-90
Number of pages20
ISSN2246-0918
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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learning
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student
teaching situation
experience
group dynamics
age difference
research project
time

Keywords

  • Problembased Learning
  • master programme
  • social work
  • learning activities

Cite this

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title = "PBL and mixed-background groups on Master’s programmes",
abstract = "This article presents the main findings of an applied research project, which studied student experiences of the challenges and opportunities of Problem Based Learning (PBL) in two master programmes (MPs) at Aalborg University (AAU) characterised by diverse student groups, who bring different educational backgrounds, skills and experiences to the table. Research shows that PBL holds a potential for integrating and promoting learning outcomes for diverse student population, but also that heterogeneity can have negative influence on group dynamics and collaboration central in PBL, but how students experience this is under-researched. The investigation shows that diversity in terms of age differences and varieties in educational backgrounds are experienced both as challenges in teaching situations, but also as an opportunity to increase studentlearning over time. The study concludes with recommendations for practical alterations of the introduction to and conditions for the PBL model.",
keywords = "Problembased Learning, master programme, social work, learning activities",
author = "Mie Engen and Fallov, {Mia Arp} and Jensen, {Rune Hagel Skaarup} and Jensen, {Julie Borup} and Ole Ravn",
year = "2018",
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language = "English",
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TY - JOUR

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AU - Engen, Mie

AU - Fallov, Mia Arp

AU - Jensen, Rune Hagel Skaarup

AU - Jensen, Julie Borup

AU - Ravn, Ole

PY - 2018

Y1 - 2018

N2 - This article presents the main findings of an applied research project, which studied student experiences of the challenges and opportunities of Problem Based Learning (PBL) in two master programmes (MPs) at Aalborg University (AAU) characterised by diverse student groups, who bring different educational backgrounds, skills and experiences to the table. Research shows that PBL holds a potential for integrating and promoting learning outcomes for diverse student population, but also that heterogeneity can have negative influence on group dynamics and collaboration central in PBL, but how students experience this is under-researched. The investigation shows that diversity in terms of age differences and varieties in educational backgrounds are experienced both as challenges in teaching situations, but also as an opportunity to increase studentlearning over time. The study concludes with recommendations for practical alterations of the introduction to and conditions for the PBL model.

AB - This article presents the main findings of an applied research project, which studied student experiences of the challenges and opportunities of Problem Based Learning (PBL) in two master programmes (MPs) at Aalborg University (AAU) characterised by diverse student groups, who bring different educational backgrounds, skills and experiences to the table. Research shows that PBL holds a potential for integrating and promoting learning outcomes for diverse student population, but also that heterogeneity can have negative influence on group dynamics and collaboration central in PBL, but how students experience this is under-researched. The investigation shows that diversity in terms of age differences and varieties in educational backgrounds are experienced both as challenges in teaching situations, but also as an opportunity to increase studentlearning over time. The study concludes with recommendations for practical alterations of the introduction to and conditions for the PBL model.

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KW - social work

KW - learning activities

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