Evaluating a Secondary Education Urban Ecology Project within the Framework of a Problem-Based Learning Methodology
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Problem-based learningEnvironmental educationEnvironmental problemsCooperative workSWOT AnalysisSecondary education
Ayerbe-López, J.; Perales-Palacios, F.J. Evaluating a Secondary Education Urban Ecology Project within the Framework of a Problem-Based Learning Methodology. Educ. Sci. 2023, 13, 915. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci13090915
As a reaction to the current situation of local and global environmental deterioration, recent decades have seen the emergence of multiple educational strategies and methodologies within Environmental Education (EE) with the aim of promoting pro-environmental attitudes among young people. One of these strategies is Problem-Based Learning (PBL), and it is necessary to analyze the didactic implications of this methodology in the field of EE in order to maximize its effectiveness. This study evaluates the implementation and didactic implications of an environmental project designed under the PBL methodology. The project was carried out over consecutive years of compulsory secondary education (Grades 9 and 10) in two secondary schools in the province of Granada, Spain. The data collection instruments used included the researcher’s diary, self-assessment and reflection questionnaires for the participating students, and questionnaires and rubrics completed by the audience during the presentation of the final product. The study employed a qualitative interpretative approach, using response categorization and SWOT analyses, the results of which revealed multiple conclusions, highlighting the high level of motivation, work and participation of the students, as well as the didactic benefits of the enriching socialization of the project. Difficulties, such as time management and cooperative group work, lack of practice in the methodology used and challenges related to the use of information and communication technologies (ICT), were also identified. Finally, recommendations are provided for the application of this methodology in other educational contexts.