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The effect of tutors’ content expertise on student learning, group process, and participant satisfaction in a problem-based learning curriculum
journal contributionposted on 1995-01-01, 00:00 authored by G Regehr, Jenepher MartinJenepher Martin, C Hutchison, J Murnaghan, M Cusimano, R Reznick
There is debate about whether problem-based learning (PBL) tutors should have expertise in the content of each problem. This study addresses three aspects of the debate: student knowledge, the nature of the student-tutor interaction, and student satisfaction. Four PBL problems were selected from a 2nd-year clinical medicine course. Expert and nonexpert tutors were identified for each problem. Following each problem, students wrote an examination based on the problem's learning objectives and completed a questionnaire evaluating their tutorial experience. In addition, the nature of the student-tutor interaction was assessed in 10 “expert” and 10 “nonexpert” tutorials. Analysis revealed no significant difference between tutorial groups led by content experts and those led by nonexperts. If PBL tutorials in an undergraduate curriculum are led by qualified physicians, the addition of problem-specific expertise does not affect students’ acquisition of knowledge, the tutorial process, or student satisfaction with the tutorial experience. © 1995, Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. All rights reserved.