The problem-based learning process: An overview of different models

L. Wijnia, Sofie Loyens, Remy M. J. P. Rikers

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review


This chapter discusses the types of process models that have been applied in problem-based learning (PBL). Especially, in higher education, an important distinction is made between process models emphasizing procedural knowledge acquisition (i.e., PBL as simulation of professional practice) and process models emphasizing declarative knowledge acquisition (i.e., PBL as mental model construction). Other models in higher education are more focused on “learning how to learn” and “learning by doing”. Although, these models have been developed in higher education, several models have been adapted for younger learners as well. We argue, that it is not possible to identify one “ideal” model of PBL. When implementing PBL and choosing a process model, teachers need to ask themselves what type of knowledge they want their students to learn and what types of problems and learning activities are most suitable to obtain these objectives.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Wiley Handbook of problem-based learning
EditorsM. Moallem, W. Hung, N. Dabbagh
PublisherJohn Wiley & Sons, Ltd
ISBN (Electronic)9781119173243
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2019
Externally publishedYes


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