Project-Based Learning (PBL)

A structured approach to learning where students tackle meaningful projects that address significant content. 

Growth - Strengthen and interest-based yet open to taking risks. 

Supportive - educator factilitated, yet student-led.

Authentic - Real and focused, yet open to new innovative possibilities.

Wholistic - Product yet process focused.

PDF Document  PBL Essential Elements are:

Challenging Problem or Question - The heart of a project--what it is "about," if one were to sum it up--is a problem to investigate and solve, or a question to explore and answer. 

Student Inquiry - To inquire is to seek information or to investigate--it's a more active, in-depth process than ust "looking somethign up" in a book or online. The inquiry process takes time, which means a Gold Standard project lasts more than a few days. The process also repeats itself until a satisfactory solution or answer is developed.   

Authenticity - In education, the concept has to do with how "real-world" the learning or the task is.  Authenticity increases student motivation and learning.  

Student Voice & Choice - Having a say in a project creates a sense of ownership in students; they care more about the project and work harder.

Reflection - Throughout a project, students--and the teacher--should reflect on what they're learning, how they're learning, and why they're learning.  

Critique and Revision - Students should be taught how to give and receive constructive peer feedback that will improve project processes and products, guided by rubrics, models, and formal feedback/critique protocols.  

Public Product - Like authenticity, a public product adds greatly to PBL's motivating power and encourages high-quality work.  When students have to present or display their work to an audience beyong the classroom, the performance bar raises, since no one wants to look bad in public.

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For more information, please contact one of our staff members:
Valorie Putnam
Assistant Superintendent
Careerline Tech Center
616-738-8935 x4203
David Searles
Director
Careerline Tech Center
616-738-8950 x4302
Jennifer Knittel
Advisor
Careerline Tech Center
616-738-8950 x4878
Nicole Gitler
Program Developer
Careerline Tech Center
616-738-8950 x4175
Kathy Steinbach
Administrative Assistant
Careerline Tech Center
616-738-8950 x4034
Melissa Bultema
Specialist/Early College
Careerline Tech Center
616-738-8950 x4204
David Ladd
Career Development Facilitator
Careerline Tech Center
616-738-8950 x4089