Published: February 6, 2004
This book describes team-based learning (TBL), an unusually powerful and versatile teaching strategy that enables teachers to take small group learning to a whole new level of effectiveness. It is the only pedagogical use of small groups that is based on a recognition of the critical difference between “groups” and “teams”, and intentionally employs specific procedures to transform newly-formed groups into high performance learning teams.This book is a complete guide to implementing TBL in a way that will promote the deep learning all teachers strive for. This is a teaching strategy that promotes critical thinking, collaboration, mastery of discipline knowledge, and the ability to apply it.
Part I covers the basics, beginning with an analysis of the relative merits and limitations of small groups and teams. It then sets out the processes, with much practical advice, for transforming small groups into cohesive teams, for creating effective assignments and thinking through the implications of team-based learning.
In Part II teachers from disciplines as varied as accounting, biology, business, ecology, chemistry, health education and law describe their use of team-based learning. They also demonstrate how this teaching strategy can be applied equally effectively in environments such as large classes, mixed traditional and on-line classes, and with highly diverse student populations.
Part III offers a synopsis of the major lessons to be learned from the experiences of the teachers who have used TBL, as described in Part II. For teachers contemplating the use of TBL, this section provides answers to key questions, e.g., whether to use team-based learning, what it takes to make it work effectively, and what benefits one can expect from it–for the teacher as well as for the learners.The appendices answer frequently asked questions, include useful forms and exercises, and offer advice on peer evaluations and grading. A related Web site that allows readers to “continue the conversation,” view video material, access indexed descriptions of applications in various disciplines and post questions further enriches the book. The editors’ claim that team-based instruction can transform the quality of student learning is fully supported by the empirical evidence and examples they present. An important book for all teachers in higher education.