n South African Journal of Education - Examining learning achievement and experiences of science learners in a problem-based learning environment

Volume 23, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0256-0100
  • E-ISSN: 2076-3433



Problem-based learning (PBL) is a facilitation strategy that has the potential to put learners at the centre of activity and to make them accountable for their own learning. However, the assumption is often made, during attempts to utilise PBL, that learners will acquire less information than learners who have been taught through direct, lecture-based strategies. The present work challenged this assumption by exposing experimental and control groups of Grade 10 science learners to different learning environments. Results showed that the PBL-taught experimental group did not sacrifice subject content. PBL learners scored significantly higher than their lecture-taught counterparts on selected questions in the post-test that were classified on Bloom's taxonomy as higher order questions. Through qualitative measures the study also probed the levels of enjoyment experienced by below- and above-average achievers who were exposed to PBL.

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