ERIC Number: ED334154
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Changes in Problem Solving Abilities of Students Taught through Case Methods.
To examine the effectiveness of the case method in teacher education, 54 students enrolled in an introductory foundations course were taught together in a weekly lecture and randomly assigned to weekly section meetings taught either by the case method or by discussion of readings. As measured by responses to a problematic situation on the mid-term examination, case methods increased education students' abilities to spot issues in problematic situations, analyze educational dilemmas in sophisticated ways, and identify possible alternatives for action. Case methods were as successful with young undergraduate students as with mature students with greater life experience. The effects of case methods on the ability to analyze classroom situations were inconclusive, however. Almost half the students in the discussion section did not respond to the analytic questions. This result could be either an instructional effect, indicating weaker analytic skills of discussion methods students, or a methodological accident. Students expressed highly positive attitudes toward case methods classes, but no significant differences in attitudes were found between case methods students and discussion methods students when taught in small classes by the same instructor. (Author/IAH)
Descriptors: Case Method (Teaching Technique), Case Studies, Discussion (Teaching Technique), Education Courses, Foundations of Education, Higher Education, Methods Research, Preservice Teacher Education, Problem Solving, Student Attitudes, Student Characteristics, Teacher Education Curriculum, Teaching Methods
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Chicago, IL, April 3-7, 1991).