Synthesis of research articles and studies exploring whether project-based learning provides an effective learning environment for in-person and distance/virtual education
Improving effectiveness in learning has been the subject among educators for many years. Utilizing project-based learning methods has been the focus of much research and study also for many years.
During and after the Covid pandemic virtual and distance education expanded at an accelerated rate. Distance education expands university and college reach and is not limited by distance or location. Opportunities to improve education effectiveness through a combination of virtual education and PBL. Though opportunities abound, there are challenges to overcome with both virtual education and PBL.
1) Does project-based learning (PBL) provide an effective learning environment in both in-person and distance/virtual education? 2) What are effective methods for assessment in PBL?
project-based learning assessment, project-based learning “student motivation”, project-based learning in distance education
Number of Articles
8 articles were identified
Types of Articles
Both Quantitative and Qualitative articles were synthesized.
November 18th, 2022—December 10th, 2022
The research included global studies as distance education was included in some of the search criteria.
Key findings among Research Articles
1) Effective PBL virtual learning required teacher guidance to keep students regularly engaged in discussions.
2) Students were challenged (at times to frustration) as they learned to manage group members, projects tasks, deadlines
3) E-portfolios improved the effectiveness of PBL-focused courses
4) PBL frequently requires more engagement of both teacher and student
5) Tradditinional homework, quiz, and tests assessments is not effective in PBL
Discussion and Recommendations
There are two areas where additional research could benefit this area of study.
1) though this synthesis of current research did not include a restriction to location parameter it is apparent through lack of finding U.S. based studies in the various search results. IT would be of benefit to U.S. education providers to add to the knowledge base with regional perspectives.
2) the most recent work cited in the research queries came during the Pandemic, though this data is still relevant studies were lacking that reflect a post-covid analysis of the topic.