ERIC Number: ED418325
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998
Using Problem-Solving Approaches in Vocational Education. Practice Application Brief.
Brown, Bettina Lankard
The problem-solving approach to teaching and learning has proved especially useful in vocational education as a way to relate classroom learning to real-life situations or problems. The problem-solving method of teaching places the responsibility for learning on students. Educators and special reform groups in other subject areas refer to a process known as "problem-based learning," which is characterized by four critical features: engagement, inquiry, solution building, and reflection. For effective use of a problem-solving or problem-based approach to teaching and learning, teachers will have to alter three things: the balance of power in the classroom; the focus of attention; and their teaching skills. Reluctance to deviate from traditional teaching methods and incorporate a new teaching philosophy and practices is a major obstacle to adoption of the problem-solving approach to teaching. To implement a problem-solving approach, teachers must improve their interpersonal skills and group dynamics and be able to adapt instructional strategies, resources, and activities to promote students' development of basic skills, thinking skills, and personal qualities. Research has confirmed that, in agricultural education, the problem-solving approach is superior to the subject-matter approach as a way of improving student achievement. (Contains 15 references.) (MN)
Descriptors: Agricultural Education, Classroom Techniques, Educational Environment, Educational Practices, Educational Principles, Educational Theories, Learning Processes, Problem Based Learning, Problem Solving, Secondary Education, Teaching Methods, Theory Practice Relationship, Vocational Education
Publication Type: ERIC Publications
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Adult, Career, and Vocational Education, Columbus, OH.