Direct Problem-Based Learning (DPBL): A Framework for Integrating Direct Instruction and Problem-Based Learning Approach

  •  Sri Winarno    
  •  Kalaiarasi Muthu    
  •  Lew Ling    


Direct instruction approach has been widely used in higher education. Many studies revealed that direct instruction improved students’ knowledge. The characteristics of direct instruction include the subject delivered through face-to-face interaction with the lecturers and materials that sequenced deliberately and taught explicitly. However, direct instruction resulted in low creative thinking and teamwork skills among students. Therefore, problem-based learning activities were adapted to reform and create an innovation of a direct instruction approach in developing the new situation.

Objective: This study aimed at exploring lecturers’ and students’ perspectives towards Direct Problem-Based Learning (DPBL) activities as a new approach for activities in the classroom.

Design: A quasi-experimental design was used.

Participants: Third-year students (N = 276) who signed up for Computer Networks subject from Dian Nuswantoro University, Indonesia and five lecturers were involved.

Findings and Results: Learning outcomes were significantly positively (Sig. p=.00). Creative thinking skills score increased 8.4%, Teamwork skills score increased 11.5%, and knowledge score increased 25.9% of DPBL approach. The majority of students have difficulties in the direct instruction approach 4.71(.472). Whereas, 1.99(.655) students have low difficulty in DPBL approach. Expert participants agreed that DPBL approach can enhance creative thinking and teamwork skills  4.70(.50).

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