The Use of a Digital Problem-Based Learning Module in Science Methods Courses

  • Peter Rillero Arizona State University
  • Ying-Chih Chen Arizona State University


Teacher education in Problem-Based Learning (PBL) is requisite for improving and increasing K-12 PBL implementations.  A free, online PBL module entitled “Design a Problem-Based Learning Experience” was developed for preservice and inservice teachers. This article describes how the module is used in preserve teacher science methods courses, experiences before and after the module use, and the perceptions of sixty-two teacher candidates (TCs) after module completion. The results revealed that TCs generally had positive attitudes about the module. TCs in elementary level courses had significantly higher rating than secondary level courses. Graduate TCs also rated significantly higher than undergraduate students. Analysis of interview data revealed three features of the PBL module: (1) it is concise and organized, (2) it provides effective and practical examples, and (3) it provides interactive and rigorous videos to engage learners. Potential ways to improve the online PBL are discussed.

Case studies of PBL and reflections on PBL in practice