The History of PBL

Posted by on April 9, 2013

What is Project Based Learning?

history of PBLProject based learning is somewhat different from the traditional style of learning found in classrooms as the focus is placed on the student as leader. This student-centered learning involves small group settings where teams of children are given a project to work on and a problem to solve in a collaborative manner. Teachers take on more of a role as a facilitator of the project rather than a dictator of information. As such, students become much more engaged in the learning process and effectively internalize the information, which is usually retained for much longer periods of time due to their active participation.

A Brief History of PBL

Project based learning can be traced back to the 1960’s at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Howard Barrows and his team of colleagues in the medical school sector of McMaster were determined to come up with a method of student learning where students became actively engaged and interested in the material they were given to learn.

This was sparked by the feeling that many medical students during this time found that the vast amount of material that they were expected to learn during the first three years of medical school was almost irrelevant to the degree they were aspiring for. These medical students were not convinced that the information they were presented with throughout their first three years of courses had much to do with clinical medicine at all. It was at this point that Howard Barrows and his colleagues came up with an alternative way for students to learn in order to stimulate their minds and their level of interest.

After this initial introduction to problem based learning at McMaster University’s medical school, many other medical schools subsequently adopted this style of learning. Not only was PBL successfully implemented in undergraduate programs, but it was also introduced and implemented in many high schools and elementary schools as well. From its initial introduction in medical schools, PBL has be used to teach various subjects at all levels of education. The history of PBL has shown that project based learning can be successful on any educational level.

Accessing PBL Units For Your Classroom Setting

Many teachers know the benefits of project based learning, but are unsure how to implement it in their classrooms. If you are a teacher or an educator in a home school setting, has all the units you need to implement PBL for grades K-10. Their units are readily accessible and available for immediate download. These PBL units are tried and tested, and come with grading rubrics and full support. Visit the today and get the ready to use units that will help you bridge the gap between the classroom and real life!

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