Asee peer logo

Using Problem Based Learning to Teach Thermodynamics: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Download Paper |

Conference

2005 Annual Conference

Location

Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Innovation for ChE Student Learning

Page Count

13

Page Numbers

10.1419.1 - 10.1419.13

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/14819

Download Count

61

Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Alfred Carlson

Download Paper |

Abstract

A problem based learning (PBL) approach was used to teach the first course in Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics (First Law, Second Law, Fluid Property Thermodynamics). PBL was compared to a traditional lecture approach and an active learning approach which were used to teach the same course by the same instructor in terms immediately before and after the PBL term. Student learning was assessed in all three classes through traditional tests specifically structured to assess the first four levels on Bloom’s scale of higher learning: knowledge; comprehension; application; and analysis. Student course and instructor evaluations were used to gauge the affective response of Rose-Hulman students to the PBL approach as compared to the other two methods of teaching. According to the exam results, PBL was found to be at least as effective as the other teaching techniques at all 4 Bloom Levels, however teaching ratings were significantly lower for the PBL course than for either straight lecture or active learning approaches. This talk will present a comparison the quantitative results for PBL versus other teaching methods and give the author’s opinions as to the other benefits and problems with using PBL in the classroom.

Carlson, A. (2005, June), Using Problem Based Learning to Teach Thermodynamics: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. https://peer.asee.org/14819

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2005 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015