taught through the traditional format of lectures, seminars, and computer-based workshops.
Part of the problem was that some of the students had minimal qualifications in maths, while others could have applied to a mathematics degree. Consequently, the authors introduced a typical TBL strategy:
“In the first stage of TBL, students undertake pre-class preparation which is tested in-class by the ‘readiness assurance process’ (RAP). This comprises multiple choice questions (MCQ) completed first by individuals and then by the team. In this way, individuals receive immediate peer feedback on their recall and understanding of key concepts introduced in the pre-class reading. Students as a team then repeat the MCQs and receive immediate feedback from an answer key which is scored according to the number of attempts to find the correct MCQ response. This system of MCQ with immediate feedback at individual and team level is followed by teacher-led corrective instruction if necessary, which completes the RAP (their recall and understanding of pre-readings). In the second stage of TBL, the team’s factual knowledge and understanding is applied to a particular problem in a facilitated active team learning environment (in TBL parlance, the ‘application exercise’).”
Results showed that attendance was dramatically improved during lessons (by a factors of 3 to 4.) However, such was not the case in seminar groups (devoted to the application exercise.) In terms of performance, final examination results indicated a 7 percentage-point improvement on average compared with the previous year.
Focus group interviews indicated two distinct student perspectives: some enjoyed TBL and found it stimulating, while others found the flipped approach confusing and difficult.
More precisely, it seems like student satisfaction with the class was affectted by the practical implementation of TBL rather than by TBL methodology itself. For instance, some students felt that time was wasted when they had to move into teams, collect the team pack of materials, and such.
However, “most students indicated that the additional discussions and pre-reading materials were beneficial and that overall the TBL lectures were useful for their learning.”
Source: Cohen and Robinson (2018), "Enhancing teaching excellence through team-based learning", Innovations in Education and Teaching International, 5:2, pp. 133-142.