What are the benefits of CBL for learning?

Many studies and research in America and around the world have found that CBL is beneficial for learners through the learning processes it activates, the results it provides and the skills it acquires in learners.

It has been proven that CBL:

  •   increases student engagement
  •   develops skills development
  •   supports content mastery.

More benefits that CBL offers are:

  • establishing new teaching and learning practices which are aligned with work-life environments;
  • increasing employability for students;
  • (as an authentic learning experience), allowing students to explore, discuss, and meaningfully construct concepts and relationships in contexts that involve real-life challenges and projects that are relevant to the learner.

CBL benefits span over major educational aspects:

  • High-level communication skills
  • Addressing a broad curriculum
  • Access to wide range of technology and resources
  • High-level communication skills

A key feature of challenge-based learning is that it appropriates the networking tools and media production techniques already being used in daily life by many 21st century learners. In preparing the final products of their research — presentations of their chosen solutions — students draw upon photography, videography, audio recording, and writing skills that they may already be using as web content producers.

If they are not already doing those things, challenge-based learning provides an engaging opportunity for them to hone these kinds of high-level communication skills.

  • Addressing a broad curriculum

Because CBL takes its ideas from real-world issues that learners then must translate into solutions of local applicability, a very wide range of curricular areas can be addressed.

When integrated as a regular part of the curriculum, CBL practices naturally lead to discovery of relevant subject matter in many areas. Because problems do not need to be invented — the challenges are real — learners connect what they are learning with their own  experiences.

  • Access to wide range of technology and resources

Access to technology, an integral part of CBL, can help teachers overcome some of the other constraints of problem-based learning.

Ubiquitous Internet access in a one-to-one setting opens the door for learners to use online tools for collaboration and communication, often the same tools that are used in the modern workplace. Learners have access to a wider range of resources, including current news articles, research and even experts around the world.

Last but not least:

  • CBL motivates learners to come to class and do well.
  • It leverages technology tools to put the daily experiences of learners in the service of their education.
  • It focuses learning on real-world issues, gives learners a chance to work on important problems, gets their voices heard and empowers them to influence their community for the better.
  • CBL has real potential to reverse the slipping trend of poor retention, low scores, and disengagement, turning learning into an exciting, meaningful experience — as it is meant to be.