Preparing Students for Real-Life Problems: Multimedia PBL Technology for Future TeachersTheresa A. Ochoa, Special EducationFeng-Ru Sheu, Instructional Support Systems
Presentation OutlineIntroduction (Ochoa)PBL Assumptions & Goals (Ochoa)Description and Application of MUSE Problem (Ochoa)Purpose of MUSE CaseParticipants, Procedures, & Student ActivitiesResultsInteractive Description of D&SD Problem (Ochoa)Development Process & Challenges of D&SD Problem (10 minutes Sheu)Implications across disciplines (Ochoa)Qs & As (Ochoa & Sheu)
Our Charge and ChallengeProfessional preparation schools are charged with the preparation of future practitionersLaw schools prepare lawyersMedical schools prepare physiciansSchools of education prepare teachers.The problem is that there is a noticeable disconnect between preparation activities and actual practiceDid they forget the content?Did they obtain the content?Was the content meaningful?
PBL AssumptionsLearning involves both knowing and doingStudents bring knowledge to learning experiencesKnew knowledge is more likely to be learned whenStudents prior knowledge is activatedStudents are provided opportunities to apply knowledgeNew knowledge is encoded in a context resembling the context in which it will subsequently will be used
PBL Model GoalsFamiliarize students with future problemsAcquaint students with relevant knowledge Foster application skills of acquired knowledgeDevelop problem solving skillsDevelop skills in implementation of solutionsDevelop leadership skillsDevelop array of effective capacitiesDevelop self-directed learning skillsBridges & Hallinger, 1995
PBL Instructional ApproachProvide messy, real-life problemsStudents assume major responsibility for their learning (anchored constructivism)Students are assigned to project teams responsible for framing the problem and deciding how to use knowledge obtained from readings and discussionsClassroom time structure changes to accomplish the projectEvaluation is shared (students, professor, practitioner)
Multicultural Special Education ProblemAndres is a 1st grader with limited English skills and is experiencing academic difficulties.What is the nature of Andres academic difficulties? Are they related to English language limitations or cognitive deficiencies?Will you make a special education referral?
Gerber, English, & Singer, 1999
Interactive View of MUSE ProblemNarrativeBackground information searchStudent Activity 1: Frame the ProblemRole StrandsRole Simulation & Information SearchStudent Activity 2: Determine his needs and develop an IEPProblem ResolutionProposed SolutionStudent Activity 3: Compare decision to expertsDemonstrate Muse Phases.
Table 1: Description of Students Using the MUSE Problem
Section 1 (n=36)Section 2 (n=33)Section 3 (n=34)
Males 8 11Females 28 3233Class Standing Sophomore15 2317 Junior21 1014 Senior 0 03 IEP Teams 6 65
Table 2: Types of Problems Experienced by Simulated IEP Teams & Referral Decisions Section 1Section 2Section 3Technical SchedulingMeeting TimeDiscussionParticipationDifference ofOpinionSPED Referral6=yes6=yes3=yes2=no
Sample Group Responses About Referral Group 1: Andres needs more attention beyond what the general educator can provide. Also, interventions have been tried in school and at home that have not been beneficial to Andres academic and social needs (such as reading interventions two times a week, an aide half an hour every day, a bilingual math peer tutor, and another bilingual helper for Spanish support in the reading program. Although these interventions can be helpful, they are not giving enough help to be beneficial for Andres. Group 2: Andres below average academic achievement and lacking communication skills has led us to the decision of referring him to special services. We further believe that Andres is in need of additional help because his current one-on-one work with specialists have failed to help him improve.
Instructors ExperienceI was running into brick walls with some of the students leaping over hurdles along with other students I began to doubt the point of the MUSE Case. I was discouraged and felt unable able to get the students interested in learning about multicultural education, about students such as Andres and his family, and most importantly, I felt as if I would never be able to teach the students to apply what they had learned about the special education pre-referral and referral process. I began to question my abilities to teach something new, such as the MUSE case, and about my teaching skills in generalContinued
Instructors Experience continuedMy experiences in using the [MUSE Problem] are best explained as adventurous.Some of the high points found in using this CD-ROM was thestory of AndresI was excited to use the MUSE to teach my students, particularly my junior and senior students who were intrigued with the caseand found that the discussions held in class revolving around the multi-cultural articleswere powerful and moving. The CD-ROM was easy to navigate. I would use the MUSE CD ROM again after changing the timeline.
Disabilities & School Discipline ProblemSebastian is a student with disabilities who violated his schools no-drug policy by bringing marijuana to school.How is his misconduct related to his disability? Ochoa (in press)
Teaching Implications Across DisciplinesUse of PBL multimedia technology is require up-front time commitments on the part of the professor to ensure hardware is functioning properly and reduce amount of time students spend waiting to view and hear video clips. Video clips adds a real life-like component to learning but lengthy clips may result in viewing problems and result in long waiting periods.Technological difficulties require instructors to serve as mediators between software and hardware to ensure that students spend time interacting with the educational problem instead of spending time learning to use the software.
Problem-based learning can heighten frustration levels in students accustomed to traditional text-book problems with a definite correct answer.More classroom time may need to be allocated to complete group work in order to reduce attendance problems.Instructors need group management skills in order to facilitate effective communication and cooperation among groups.Despite challenges the PBL Interactive Multimedia MUSE Problem was well regarded by students and instructors for learning and teaching pre-service teachers about the referral to special education process
Qs & As