Sadlo, Gaynor and Richardson, John T. E.
Approaches to studying and perceptions of the academic environment in students following problem-based and subject-based curricula.
Higher Education Research and Development, 22(3),
To investigate the effects of different kinds of curriculum, the Course Experience Questionnaire (CEQ) and a short form of the Approaches to Studying Inventory (ASI) were administered to 225 2nd-year students at six different schools of occupational therapy. Their curricula were classified as problem-based, subject-based or hybrid. Their scores on the scales of the CEQ and ASI were closely related, insofar as they shared more than half of their respective variance. Problem-based curricula were associated with higher scores on the scales of the CEQ concerned with appropriate assessment and emphasis on independence. With the ASI, problem-based curricula were associated with lower scores on all of the scales concerned with a reproducing orientation, and with higher scores on the scale concerned with a deep approach. These findings suggest that the implementation of a problem-based curriculum has desirable effects on the quality of learning, and these are at least in part mediated by students' perceptions of their academic environment.
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