Efficacy of Self Assessment and Reflective Journals in Problem-based Learning

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Venkatesan, Srikanth and Stojcevski, Alex (2009) Efficacy of Self Assessment and Reflective Journals in Problem-based Learning. In: Proceedings of 'What are we Learning about Learning?', 2nd International Symposium on Problem Based Learning, Singapore, 10-12 June 2009. Tay, Alvin, Phua, Norman and Sockalingam, Nachamma, eds. Republic Polytechnic, Centre for Educational Development, Singapore, pp. 461-468.


Problem Based Learning (PBL) has attracted wide attention ever since its inception. Literature identifies PBL as one of the best alternative pedagogy to Instructive Learning (IL), whilst challenges in assessing the success of PBL have also been widely reported. Unlike Instructive Learning wherein examination is the major assessment component, PBL has number of components at its disposal: portfolio, oral presentations, interviews, role play, position paper, peer assessment, self assessment, reflective journal and so on. In the School of Engineering and Science at Victoria University, Australia, often combinations of these assessment techniques are used to facilitate effective learning. A final summative grade is provided as a measure of student learning with appropriate formative feedback. It is to be noted that the assessments can be conducted at various times of the semester. This provides a sampling of the learning process across the semester but does not provide a continuum. Current trends of monitoring the learning process is centered around e-learning such as Wikipedia or custom designed tools. In this paper, the authors have analysed the process of learning using the (student) self assessment survey distributed at the start of the semester and the reflective journal submitted towards the end of the semester. The questionnaire focussed on PBL assessments, group work, resources, skill sets required to undertake PBL and the role of facilitators. Students were asked to provide both quantitative (rating scale 1 to 5) and qualitative feedback in the form of comments. Students were given total freedom as far as the reflective journals were concerned. Questionnaires were analysed quantitatively, whilst the qualitative comments were extracted from the reflective journal. There was a clear correlation between good reflective journals and the corresponding portfolio grades. Thus the self assessment questionnaire and the reflective journals were useful in capturing the learning process.

Item type Book Section
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/5591
Official URL http://www.rp.edu.sg/symposium/2009/Proceedings.pd...
ISBN 9789810832919
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education
Historical > SEO Classification > 9302 Teaching and Instruction
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Engineering and Science
Keywords ResPubID17238, problem-based learning, self-assessment, reflective journals, learning process
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