Feasibility and Effectiveness of Different Models of Team-Based Learning Approaches in STEMM-Based Disciplines

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This study presents findings from three different disciplines in STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine) and across different models of student-focused teaching. Specifically, we assessed the feasibility and effectiveness of flipped classroom approaches combined with team based learning (TBL), and TBL alone within STEMM, particularly in the disciplines of Physics, Engineering and Medicine across different year levels. TBL activities were incorporated into undergraduate Physics and Engineering cohorts, with students from a diverse range of majors and backgrounds and a graduate level Doctor of Medicine (MD) cohort. Quiz scores from the Physics cohort were significantly improved following TBL, exam scores from the engineering cohort were more evenly distributed than pre-TBL quiz scores and students in the medical cohort had higher quiz scores when working within teams rather than alone. Qualitative survey responses from both the physics and engineering cohorts indicated that students felt TBL was positive and increased their understanding of key concepts. Informal feedback from medical students following TBL classes was also very positive and students demonstrated obvious engagement. Comparisons for pre- versus post-TBL quiz scores for Physics, for pre-TBL quartile versus exam scores in Engineering and for Team versus Individual learning quiz scores in Medicine all provide evidence of effective student engagement and performance. The observation study suggests that TBL is a feasible and effective method of student-focused learning within STEMM. More rigorously designed studies are now required to further explore these findings.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)391-405
Number of pages15
JournalResearch in Science Education
Early online date4 Oct 2019
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2021


  • Team-based learning
  • Group work
  • Student engagement


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