Using educational technology to engage students in problem-based learning

Michael James KEPPELL

Research output: Contribution to conferencePapers


Educators have been lamenting for decades about recent graduates from university settings who have difficulty in applying their knowledge to professional settings. It is often suggested that there is disconnectedness between theory and practice and a lack of real-world applied knowledge. One solution to this dilemma has been the utilization of teaching strategies such as problem-based learning (PBL) that explicitly connect theory and practice. PBL has been advocated and trialled by some educational pioneers in physical educaiton to address the gap between theory and practice. Prospective physical education teachers need exposure to authentic cases that may assist them to bridge this gap in order to improve their professional practice in the school settings. It is suggested that cases are useful in teacher education as "students......cognitive schema regarding teaching is underdeveloped or inappropriately tied to their experiences as students" (Richardson, 1999, p. 121). Small group discussion, a student-centred approach and a facilitator role of the lecturer characterise a PBL approach. PBL often utilises paper-based cases to engage small groups of students in authentic problems. Although these paper-based cases expose the learner to a real case, they may not sufficiently immerse the learner in the case context unless the student has an ability to visualize the people and the issues being presented in the case. Students need a rich imagination to 'paint the picture' of the case and, like any other skill, need to be taught how to visualise the case. Media-rich educational triggers in the form of video-cases, audio, photographs, animations and graphics may offer a means of visually engaging the student within the PBL case, particularly in the early stages of implementing PBL with novice PBL students. This session will explore the rationale and examples of this teaching approach. Copyright © 2004 Taylor & Francis Group, an informa business.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2004


Keppell, M. J. (2004, July). Using educational technology to engage students in problem-based learning. In M. J. Keppell (Chair), Problem-based learning. Symposium conducted at the II International Conference for Physical Educators (ICPE 2004), The Hong Kong Institute of Education, China.


  • Teacher Education
  • Teacher Education and Professional Development


Dive into the research topics of 'Using educational technology to engage students in problem-based learning'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.