Navigation Links
Horticulture students link problem-solving to employment
Date:3/17/2011

AMES, IARecognizing the need for university students to develop problem-solving skills they will need in their careers, educators are looking to student-centered, problem-based learning strategies. Problem-based learning (PBL) experiences have been shown to promote higher-order thinking skills in students, but, for faculty, implementing and assessing problem-based activities often means a substantial time investment. Iowa State University professor Ann Marie VanDerZanden and graduate student Tigon Woline published a study in HortTechnology that reported on an innovative approach to integrating case-based problem-solving and computer-based instruction.

According to VanDerZanden, some problemsin the classroom as in the real world of workhave one clear solution, while others have many paths that can lead to an answer. In educational language, the former type of problem is called "well-structured" while the latter is termed "ill-structured". While traditional textbooks feature mostly well-structured problems, ill-structured problems are more common and often more challenging. Many educators find that students are inadequately prepared to solve real-world problems because these ill-structured problems are rarely posed in traditional education courses.

As a means of encouraging faculty to use more problem-based activities, an online environment called The Problem-solving Learning Portal (PSLP) was developed by an interdepartmental team of Iowa State faculty members. The environment includes a database with resource documents, an Internet interface, and instructor-provided questions. To evaluate the online PSLP environment for use in solving an ill-structured horticulture case study, VanDerZanden and Woline designed a research study involving Iowa State University students enrolled in a landscape class.

The researchers assigned 45 students a series of four online, ill-structured case study problems based in a realistic residential landscape. Results showed that students perceived problem-solving as an important skill and were concerned with finding the best solution to problems. However, students were more concerned with obtaining the right answer than developing a strategy to solve the problems. "That the students said that finding the best solution (to a problem) is among the more important aspects of problem-solving indicates that they understand how their problem-solving impacts the people they are trying to satisfy, in either an academic or a business situation", the authors wrote.

Students in the study rated the online learning environment as adequate, reporting that they liked the variety of resources available and the fact that case information was consolidated in a single location. Further research at Iowa State is focusing on designing a more user-oriented interface for the PSLP that would allow instructors to create, manage, assess, and gather data on their cases. The environment is also being integrated with other ill-structured problem-solving systems at Iowa State and other universities.


'/>"/>

Contact: Michael W. Neff
mwneff@ashs.org
703-836-4606
American Society for Horticultural Science
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. APS sets aside $50,000 to help students, post-docs, in wake of Hurricane Ike
2. New book dissects statistics for doctors and medical students
3. Students eat more whole grains when its gradually added to school lunch
4. New book helps medical students master clinical skills
5. College students find comfort in their pets during hard times
6. Web-based case studies help students develop career skills
7. High school students paper published in prestigious college math journal
8. At WPI, some students are learning its OK to peek
9. Science internships attract students to research careers
10. Bioscience institutions come together to launch Microlife Discovery Center for area students
11. K-State using Second Life island to help high school students learn earth science
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/13/2017)... Former 9/11 Commission border counsel and Special Counsel to ... of Identity Strategy Partners, LLP, today releases the following ... Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the ... Trump,s ,Travel Ban, Executive Order gains more notoriety and ... ban, it is important that our national discourse regain ...
(Date:2/8/2017)... Report Highlights ... The global synthetic-biology market reached nearly $3.9 ... growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 24.0% ... global markets for synthetic biology. - Analyses of global market ... of compound annual growth rates (CAGRs) through 2021. - Coverage ...
(Date:2/7/2017)... February 7, 2017 Ipsidy Inc. ... Corporation [OTC: IDGS], ("Ipsidy" or the "Company") a provider ... processing services, is pleased to announce the following changes ... Effective January 31, 2017, Philip D. Beck ... CEO and President.  An experienced payment industry professional and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/22/2017)... ... 22, 2017 , ... Kernel , a human intelligence ... (KRS) clinical development program. KRS is a neurotechnology spin-out from the Massachusetts ... applications. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed. , It addition ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... , ... February 22, 2017 ... ... (TOPEC), the leading medical education provider of women’s health, primary care, ... the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME). ACCME’s Accreditation with Commendation ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... , Feb 22, 2017 ... of the "Global Biological Crop Protection (Bio-Pesticide) Market-By Type, By ... (2016-2021)" report to their offering. ... Global Biological Crop Protection Market is forecasted ... The strong growth in biopesticide or biological crop protection market ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... , ... February 22, 2017 , ... ... the addition of Tom Perkins as European director. Operating from Pennside’s Zurich headquarters, ... Pennside. , Perkins joins Pennside after more than a decade with leading ...
Breaking Biology Technology: