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Shifting Perceptions within Online Problem-Based Learning

Shifting Perceptions within Online Problem-Based Learning
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Author(s): Roisin Donnelly (Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland) and Timo Portimojärvi (University of Tampere, Finland)
Copyright: 2009
Pages: 11
Source title: Encyclopedia of Distance Learning, Second Edition
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Patricia L. Rogers (Bemidji State University, USA), Gary A. Berg (California State University Channel Islands (Retired), USA), Judith V. Boettcher (Designing for Learning, USA), Caroline Howard (HC Consulting, USA), Lorraine Justice (Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong) and Karen D. Schenk (K. D. Schenk and Associates Consulting, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-198-8.ch276


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This article is aimed at supporting academic staff in universities and colleges who have begun or are considering introducing online problem-based learning (OPBL) for students’ learning. OPBL is a promising combination of pedagogical innovations and technological solutions that support and enhance each other. In this article, we will examine the perceptions present in higher education today that are connected with the development within the research fields of e-learning and problem-based learning. This article is based on the recent and extensive emergence of literature on online learning, and the success of problem-based learning (PBL). Traditionally, PBL has usually been conducted in a face-to-face setting. Whilst there is a growing research- base in the area (Donnelly, 2005; Koschmann, 2002; Portimojärvi, 2006; Uden, 2005; Valaitis, Sword, Jones, & Hodges, 2005), it is fair to say that less is still known about the use of PBL in the electronic-based distance-education “virtual classroom.”

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