Workshop T... Getting Ready For A Fishbowl With PBL Research


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Workshop T… Get ready for a PBL Research Fishbowl.

1. Look at one of the research articles included in the links below. Answer the following questions.

Article Name -

How does this article support PBL? -


Are there ways it may not support? -


Your thoughts on Article -


2. Be ready to share some points you learned in the fishbowl.

Reflections on fishbowl. -


Research Links




Does PBL Work? - There is forty years of accumulated evidence that the instructional strategies and procedures that make up standards-focused Project Based Learning are effective in building deep content understanding, raising academic achievement and encouraging student motivation to learn. Research studies have demonstrated that PBL can do the following. Direct Links to Research Information.



PBL Research Summary - (from Edutopia) A growing body of academic research supports the use of project-based learning in schools as a way to engage students, cut absenteeism, boost cooperative learning skills, and improve test scores. Those benefits are enhanced when technology is used in a meaningful way in the projects. Following are synopses of a range of studies on project-based learning:



Powerful Learning - A review of research on the most effective K-12 teaching practices from two of the coauthors of Powerful Learning: What We Know About Teaching for Understanding.



PBL and Advanced Placement - A growing body of academic research supports the use of project-based learning in schools as a way to engage students, cut absenteeism, boost cooperative learning skills, and improve test scores. Those benefits are enhanced when technology is used in a meaningful way in the projects. Following are synopses of a range of studies on project-based learning:



PBL and Science Test Outcomes Using Michigan MEAP - This finding shows that participants in the LeTUS inquiry-based science curriculum passed the high-stakes MEAP test more than other Detroit Public School students.



Meta-Analyses of PBL Outcomes - One type of PBL Outcomes research involves combining the results of many studies into one meta-analysis. The following articles from a special issue of the Interdisciplinary Journal of Problem-based Learning summarize three decades of research from 1976 to 2007 that compared a PBL curriculum to a traditional curriculum. One significant finding: Overall meta-synthesis shows short term memorization is a weakness for PBL (strength for traditional instruction), but longer term, deeper learning is a strength.



Overview of Research on PBL - This review examines research related to a teaching and learning model popularly referred to as "Project-Based Learning" (PBL). All of the research on Project-Based Learning has taken place in the past ten years and most of it in just the last few years. Since there is not a large body of PBL research, the review is inclusive rather than selective. Also available at BIE.



ASCD: Project Based Learning - The core idea of project-based learning is that real-world problems capture students' interest and provoke serious thinking as the students acquire and apply new knowledge in a problem-solving context. The teacher plays the role of facilitator, working with students to frame worthwhile questions, structuring meaningful tasks, coaching both knowledge development and social skills, and carefully assessing what students have learned from the experience. Advocates assert that project-based learning helps prepare students for the thinking and collaboration skills required in the workplace.



Research Supported PBL Practice - At one New Tech Network high school, strategies backed by research make project-based learning effective and engaging for teachers and students.



NMSA: PBL in Middle Grades - The focus of this research summary is to foster an understanding of project-based learning (PBL), particularly in mathematics education; to explain the factors for making a conscious decision to implement PBL in middle grades mathematics classrooms; and to provide insights about the possible realized effects when mathematics-based PBL is implemented.



Using PBL to Teach 21 Century Skills - In 2008, the West Virginia Department of Education launched a major initiative to provide teachers with professional development in PBL. This initiative was intended to improve learning outcomes across the state and to help teachers prepare students for 21st century skills.



Expeditionary Learning Schools - Expeditionary Learning Schools has worked in 144 schools in 29 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico in the 2007-2008 school year. Located primarily in urban areas where school improvement is most needed, ELS schools promote high academic achievement through real world projects and products within an active, engaging, and rigorous college preparatory curriculum. Building on a history of successful outcomes studies, a recent report found that“There is strong evidence that sustained implementation of the Expeditionary Learning Schools design has a powerful impact on student achievement”.





Authentic Intellectual Work and Standardized Test... Conflict or Coexistence - This report is one of a series of special topic reports developed by the Chicago Annenberg Research Project. It presents the results of a study of Chicago teachers' assignments in mathematics and writing in grades three, six, and eight. The study showed that students who received assignments requiring more challenging intellectual work also achieved greater than average gains on the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills in reading and mathematics, and demonstrated higher performance in reading, mathematics, and writing on the Illinois Goals Assessment ProgramContrary to some expectations, the authors find that high quality assignments were found in some very disadvantaged Chicago classrooms and that all students in these classes benefited from exposure to such instruction. The results suggest that if teachers, administrators, policymakers, and the public-at-large place more emphasis on authentic intellectual work in classrooms, yearly gains on standardized tests in Chicago could surpass national norms.



Project Based Learning for the 21st Century - Project-Based Learning (PBL) is an innovative approach to learning that teaches a multitude of strategies critical for success in the twenty-first century. Students drive their own learning through inquiry, as well as work collaboratively to research and create projects that reflect their knowledge. From gleaning new, viable technology skills, to becoming proficient communicators and advanced problem solving.