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Year : 2005  |  Volume : 18  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 45-61

On the Additional Value of Lectures in a Problem-Based Curriculum

1 Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands
2 Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Correspondence Address:
Henk van Berkel
Associate Professor, Maastricht University, Faculty of Health Sciences, PO Box 616, 6200 MD Maastricht
The Netherlands
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Objective: The purpose of this article is to report on a study conducted to investigate the additional value of lectures in problem-based learning. We hypothesized that lecture quality, as indicated by students, would have a positive influence on time students would spend on self-study, that they would increase intrinsic interest in subject matter and would have a positive influence on achievement. Lecture quality would, in this view, add to other factors that play a role in problem-based learning, such as prior knowledge of students, the quality of problems presented, the functioning of the tutor and small-group collaboration. Method: The hypothesis on the influence of lecture quality on learning was assessed by means of testing a structural equating model, using data from 1500 students. Discussion and Conclusions: We concluded that lecture quality does not affect time spent on study, does not add to achievement and does not influence intrinsic interest in subject matter. Post-hoc analysis, however, demonstrated the quality of lectures was related to other components of problem-based learning, not part of the presented model, such as students' perceptions of lectures as organizer of their study efforts or lectures as a means of putting the problems into a broader perspective.

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