2019 Abstracts – Innovations

Best Poster Award Nominee
201 – Teaching Self-Care and Resiliency Skills to Graduate Students through Team Based Learning

Meghan Viveiros
MGH IHP PA Program

BACKGROUND: The incidence of stress related illness in medical and health professional students is rising.  The aim of this study was to ask, can we teach students self-care skills to increase resiliency.  Using TBL and evidence-based methods from the Benson Henry Institute of Mind Body Medicine I sought to teach students these skills. Students learned the essential theories of mind body medicine prior to class.

DESCRIPTION: This module was 1 of 10 modules in an Essentials of Behavioral Medicine Course.  The module was 3 hours and was taught to 50 first year Physician Assistant students in teams of 7 students. Students created a diagram of the stress response in relation to multiple stressors presented to them during the semester.  They created a communal thought coping log that identified thought distortions. They reframed these thoughts to include adaptive perspectives.  They wrote goals for behaviors to enhance resiliency.  Qualitative data was gathered from a writing assignment asking students to reflect on selfcare skills as it relates to their personal health and academic performance.

RESULTS: Analyses revealed students reported increased sense of stress awareness and increased ability in coping with the stressors. Module evaluations were above the mean for the Institute.  This data was compared to a previous cohort of students where this module was absent from the behavioral health TBL curriculum.

CONCLUSION: Students were more aware of how they experience stress and developed coping skills to enhance resiliency. We should continue to explore incorporating resiliency skill building into TBL curriculum’s.  This module could be incorporated intoOther graduate disciplines such as rehabilitation sciences and business.  It could also be adapted for secondary education curriculum.

202 – Engaging Non-Traditional Psychology Students Through Team-based Learning and Creative Assignments
Brigitte Steinheider, James McKenzie, and Vivian Hoffmeister
University of Oklahoma- Tulsa

BACKGROUND: The number of students enrolling in nontraditional psychology programs has significantly increased during the last decade. These programs tend to attract highly heterogeneous sets of students in terms of age and academic and professional backgrounds or may be tailored for special types of students. To accommodate fulltime-working students, classes are either offered on weekends or in the evening which puts high demands on students and faculty.  Providing a rigorous, high-quality Industrial and Organizational Psychology Master’s program in a compressed course format to meet non-traditional students’ needs is a major balancing act and requires different teaching approaches.

DESCRIPTION: In this presentation, I will discuss how I use team-based learning and creative assignments to keep non-traditional master’s students engaged in the learning process and to develop their teamwork, leadership, and creative problem-solving skills. Especially for adult learners, learning is most effective if students are actively engaged in the process and if the course’s concepts relate to students’ lives and work experiences. By using a team-based learning approach, I capitalize on students’ experiences by designing stimulating and effective learning situations that allow for benchmarking and contribute real-life examples from the business community. In these exercises, students learn from eachOther, their experiences, or their study of relevant materials rather than from traditional lecture methods. Student presentations of case studies in an entertaining format (‘infotainment’) allow students to develop their creative skills and make the learning process enjoyable. This paper reports preliminary data (N = 36) comparing a team-based learning (TBL) approach using creative assignments withOther adult-learner oriented courses, and assessed instructor and team servant leadership, class climate and learner engagement. Qualitative data were gathered from six students who have completed both TBL andOther courses in the program.

RESULTS: Instructor and team servant leadership was associated with a positive climate in the classroom, leading to high student engagement. Comparisons showed significantly higher scores for all constructs except team servant leadership for TBL courses, suggesting its promise for non-traditional I-O programs. Qualitative interviews indicated that students developed creative skills and transferred them also to their work environment.

CONCLUSION: Using creative assignments in Team-based Learning classes seems effective in increasing student engagement, building community, and developing students’ creative skills.

204 – A TBL School Accountability Report Card Unit for Teacher Prep Undergrads
Scott B Waltz
California State University Monterey Bay

BACKGROUND: The TBL emphasis on application activities (AA) makes content more meaningful because student encounter course material in context. The Social Foundations of Education (SFE) course introduces future educators to political and sociological concepts that are challenging because of their broad scope; however, the AA design makes the content more comprehensible. My SFE unit on the School Accountability Report Card (SARC) deepens student literacy around this government-mandated report. TBL provides a pedagogy that advances student literacy through application of the SARCs to their own familiarity with local schools and neighborhoods.

DESCRIPTION: The SARC unit unfolds over 5 class meetings. Each meeting following the iRAT/tRAT process engages students in AAs that address one aspect of this SARC. The unit culminates with an in-class team assessment that synthesizes previous content. Mirroring the real-world purpose of the SARC, teams are provided with multiple reports from local schools and asked to evaluate which school is best serving its students and local community. Because students are from the area and are serving locally as classroom tutors as part of their degree-work, the final assessment task invites them to use their own experience to interpret the governmentally-defined SARC data.

RESULTS: The TBL AA design makes the institutional focus of the course materials more meaningful because it 1) reveals how abstract institutional data provides a data-driven perspective on school performance, and 2) introduces institutional content that bears more directly on the students’ professional plans. Student are drawn into the course content more successfully and they enjoy the classroom learning more.

CONCLUSION: As long as public education is structured by governmental accountability measures, it will be beneficial for SFE courses to increase future teachers’ (and citizens’) literacy about there measures and their implications. TBL pedagogy, through the AA design, makes that learning meaningful and engaging.

205 – Matchy!Matchy!: A Highly Kinetic TBL Application Phase Approach
Joseph D. Baker and Mark J. Hernandez
Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine and University of Central Florida College of Medicine

Introduction: At the Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (ACOM) we have been running lighter, more fun, matching exercises during some of our TBL application sessions that we called Matchy!Matchy!.  Classic TBL, at most institutions, is traditionally comprised of the summative events (the IRAT/GRAT quizzes) and the formative application phase where the students apply the knowledge they have learned previously.  In a medical school like ACOM, that knowledge can come from their assigned reading, past lectures, sessions involving medical simulation, OSCEs (Objective structured clinical examinations), laboratory work andOther learning activities. There can be a broad latitude in the content and structure of the application phase.

Aims: The aim of this study is to analyze the level of the medical student satisfaction and perception of effectiveness of the Matchy!Matchy! events.

Methods:  Over the years we have developed several different types of Matchy!Matchy! events that are stylistically different.  The voluntary student feedback from the Matchy!Matchy! sessions has been collected with the aid of Qualtrics® and ExamSoft® to assess the effectiveness of the events.

Results: The analyzed data suggests the Matchy!Matchy! events are popular with the medical students when they are designed to be less complex and with less difficult case-based content. Medical students were appreciative of the high level of hyperkinetic interactions.

Conclusions: The analysis of the student feedback was better received in Matchy!Matchy! events that involved cases that were simpler and easier to match up the elements in the allotted time.  Further evaluations are being designed to further assess the learning experiences from the Matchy!Matchy! events.

206 – Using TBL in undergraduate competencies approach courses in a business school in Mexico: ten years’ experience study
Jose Luis Neri Torres
Universidad de Colima

Introduction. The study refers to 37 one-semester undergraduate courses on investment projects assessment for expansion of small business, taught from 2004 to 2015, in a business school in Mexico which still relies mostly on traditional lecture methods.

Aim. Use TBL to develop job and generic competencies, to prepare students to respond to the high failure rate of small business expansion projects.

Methods. The study followed the educational research design, aimed at developing an optimal solution to problems in education. It followed TBL elements and activities sequences, combined with the use of real cases and research techniques.

Overall 1,398 students participated -each with a personal real case study, integrated into 261 teams to evaluate one real case from one of their peers.

The course design was modified gradually to comprise 33 major instructional units, with 79 job competencies-knowledge application questions. Data collected from a grading model based on competency development scoring rubrics on individual activities, team dialogs, and on the course project; the accumulated Likert style data took the shape of a normal curve, allowing objective student’s grade distributions.

Results. Gradual interventions improved the quality of the team project reports, but the number adequately answered application questions did not reach above 70 percent, which I attribute to limitations in competences acquired inOther program courses. Team grade weight averaged 39 percent (SD 16 percent), with negligible students’ appeal of grades, and a high level of students’ evaluation of teaching.

Conclusions. Adopting TBL for undergraduate students’ acquisition of competencies on small business expansion projects was decidedly positive. The models, formats, and instructions book developed could be useful forOther business courses based on real cases.

Best Poster Award Nominee
207 – Introductory Psychology: Developing a core TBL curriculum

Sharon Akimoto, Sarah Meerts, and Mija Vanderwege
Carleton College

Background: A common challenge faced by teachers of Introductory Psychology is its breadth, i.e. one individual must cover large portions of material outside their area of expertise.  Some faculty address this challenge by team or modular teaching, incorporating guest lectures, etc.  These approaches, however, can lack coherency and may promote a compartmentalized or disjointed view of the field, and can also be costly for departments with limited FTE resulting in large class sizes.  To address these challenges, the three of us, representing different subdisciplines within psychology created a TBL curriculum for an introductory psychology course that could be implemented by single or multiple instructors.

Description:  We began by creating TBL materials (e.g. study guide, Rats, problem sets, supplemental slides and assignments) on topics within our areas of our expertise, including detailed keys for problem sets and assignments.  For coherence, we kept the format consistent across all topics and incorporated data and scientific methodology across all fields.  To prepare for teaching eachOther’s material in future courses, we taught this course together, attending eachOther sections, learning content by helping teams on problem sets, observing how and when to provide supplemental material and assistance to students, and most importantly, by observing how each of us implements TBL practices. Throughout this process, we discussed our approaches and techniques, expanding and refining our own TBL skills and materials.

Results and Conclusions:  We now have a full set of TBL materials for Introductory Psychology that any one of us can implement in future courses.  We found it especially informative to teach and learn from eachOther in the context of an actual course.  Doing so provided a strong foundation for teaching outside our area of expertise.  The TBL format is especially conducive to sharing course materials, efficiently promoting mastery of relevant material within familiar structured TBL parameters.

Best Poster Award Nominee
208 – Method for administering and facilitating a gallery walk using Team Based Learning methods in a large-group format within a first-year medical school course.

Julia A. Moffitt and Jon M. Gustafson
Arkansas College of Osteopathic Medicine

BACKGROUND: Gallery walks are commonly used within team-based learning (TBL) modules as a medium for teams to produce works that are viewed, and feedback obtained by peers. However, most gallery walks are administered within smaller classes as it is difficult to allow large numbers of teams enough time to view and comment onOther teams work. We sought to develop a method in which a gallery walk could be utilized within an integrated biomedicine course of 158 first-year medical students.

DESCRIPTION: Following the readiness assurance process, twenty teams of students were given three clinical case scenarios in motor control centered on differential effects of upper- versus lower-motor neuron lesions and were given the assignment to draw the neural pathway utilized for the involved reflex and case scenario. Teams were further instructed to indicate how the reflex was specifically altered by the pathology identified. Groups produced the drawings on a white board or paper, and photos taken with their smartphones were uploaded to Canvas. Single response questions were also given, and each group prepared to explain their group’s diagrams in large-group facilitation and simultaneous report. Groups were then given several days to view each team’s diagrams and vote on the best overall presentation using the survey function. A wrap-up session was conducted three days following the simultaneous report session in which the winners were announced, and clarifications provided.

RESULTS: Qualitative assessment data indicate that students derived benefit and enjoyment participating in a TBL module that differed from the common multiple-choice questions. Quantitative assessment data on outcomes from objectives keyed to the TBL module indicate high performance on the four summative exam items in which content was assessed (%correct=80, Point Biserial=0.30) as compared overall to the exam (%correct=78, KR20=0.88).

CONCLUSION: A gallery walk is logistically feasible in large-group format.

209 – Open-ended Questions for Readiness Assessment and Application Activities in Team-Based Learning
Elapulli Sankaranarayanan Prakash
Department of Biomedical Sciences, Mercer University School of Medicine

Conventional Team-Based Learning (TBL) incorporates multiple-choice (MC) items with a single-best response as part of the Readiness Assessment Phase, as well as for in-class Application Activities.  The ability to automate immediate feedback is one of the stated advantages of the MC format.  In the Application Phase of TBL, the MC format allows for simultaneous report of a specific answer choice for a relatively complex problem when multiple teams in a classroom engage in solving the same problem.  I believe feedback that truly promotes or reinforces learning occurs when an explanation for the correct or incorrect responses is offered, rather than when a response is merely categorized as correct or incorrect.  Thus, the advantage of the MC item is essentially limited to unambiguously automatically coding responses to stimuli where the accuracy of the response is critical.

I hypothesize that carefully constructed open-ended questions presented without answer choices may be advantageous if conceiving answer choices such as formulating provisional diagnostic hypotheses from a patient history is an intended learning objective, and that the effects of open-ended questions on learning might be different from that promoted by MC items.  The author will share his experiences including student reactions to the use of a mixture of open-ended vs. MC questions in the context of interdisciplinary and clinically oriented instruction for second-year medical students, in a context where high-stakes summative assessments are primarily MC tests with one best answer.  In the Application phase of TBL, as long as the questions posed to promote student learning are appreciated by learners to be significant, and the resulting discussions rigorous with appropriate closure, the overall learning objectives of a course using TBL are probably of greater importance than the need for simultaneous report of specific answer choices to complex problems.

Best Poster Award Nominee
210 – Patients/Standardized Patients and TBL

Wendy Madigosky, Michelle Colarelli, and Lisha Bustos
University of Colorado Denver

Healthcare professional students apply their learning with patients and standardized patients (actors trained to portray patients in a standardized fashion).  Does it work to involve patients and standardized patient in TBL?   At the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, patients and standardized patients are involved in two different ways within a TBL-based interprofessional education course for dental, medical, nursing, pharmacy, physical therapy, physician assistant and anesthesiologist assistant students.

Patients/Family Advocates help to teach in a session about ‘Patient Engagement’ in health care at the individual, system and societal level.  Advocates have 3 roles: 1) represent the patient/family voice and role in health care and health professions education, 2) be a resource to student teams as they determine the best strategy to engage a patient/family at the individual level during their application exercises, 3) provide feedback and encouragement to student teams during report outs and inter-team discussion.   In effect, they join the facilitator as being a visiting ‘guide on the side’ with authentic expertise in this content area.  Standardized Patients portray challenging patients/providers as part of the application exercises during our ‘Advocacy and Assertion’ session.   In this session, teams are required to speak up in scenarios thatOtherwise might result in patient harm.  Standardized Patients enable teams to demonstrate their skills and communication approaches during the application exercise report out, and also provide feedback during the inter-team discussion.

In this presentation, we will describe how to recruit, train and involve Patients/Family Advocates as well as Standardized Patients in traditional TBL sessions.  We will also share feedback from students, faculty, patients and standardized patients based on engaging them in TBL sessions.


  • Identify opportunities to involve patients/standardize patients in TBL
  • Describe recruitment/training and possible roles of patients/standardized patients in TBL
  • Review feedback/results from students, faculty, patients/standardized patients

Best Poster Award Nominee
211 – Team-Based Learning for University Geology Students Reports High Student Engagement and Satisfaction

Stuart Clark
Minerals and Energy Resources Engineering, UNSW Sydney

Team-Based Learning (TBL) has not yet been applied to teach geology courses. Published implementations of active learning have been limited to inquiry-based or problem-based learning, However, these active learning methods have shown significant improvement in results for geology students, especially for introductory courses in geology.

In 2018, I converted the geology course for both undergraduate and postgraduate students in petroleum engineering at UNSW Sydney to follow the active style of Team-Based Learning (TBL). Students complete readings during the week and are assessed individually and as a team with short multiple-choice quizzes for each topic. Teams are then challenged with thought-provoking application exercises that are authentic to their future roles in the industry.

In semester 2, 2018, 27 undergraduate and 23 postgraduate students were asked to anonymously evaluate the TBL course on key learning indicators, such as student-participation (in and out of class) and the relevance of the knowledge and assessment methods. The small course made it difficult to divide students into control and experimental groups, so the study was conducted as a quasi-qualitative study. The combined student cohort was assessed with mixed quantitative responses and open-ended responses.

Students reported high engagement, class attendance was high (~90%) with the average student studying 4 hours per week outside of class time. The students significantly preferred TBL over traditional lectures (56% positive, 18% neutral, n=39). Students reported positively on the active nature of the class and the frequent feedback from the instructor as well as enjoying the problem-solving and frequent feedback of the course. The major challenges reported were that there was too little time to absorb the knowledge each week and that the readings were often too complicated to achieve well in the quizzes. Future implementations will therefore focus on increasing the overlap between topics and improving the quality of the reading material per week.

212 – Community of Practice: TBL for Training Clinical Decision-Making Across the Lifespan Workshop
Peggy Mohr, Elizabeth Kennedy, Kara Boynewicz, Durga Shah, and Michele Courtney
University of North Dakota, University of South Alabama, East Tennessee State University, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Ohio University

BACKGROUND:  The application of Team-Based Learning (TBL) for training purposes is recognized as a “Community of Practice” within the TBLC.  This poster describes a TBL workshop for pediatric physical therapists. The practice of pediatric physical therapy (PPT) encompasses multiple types of practice and settings.  Communication and collaboration are necessary as children and families transition between practice environments.  In this workshop, TBL pedagogy promoted sharing of expertise across practice settings, team collaboration, and critical thinking.

DESCRIPTION:  Team formation distributed PPT therapists from various practice area. Pre-reading materials were available prior to and during the workshop and supported a team-readiness assessment (TRAT).  A case study spanning from birth to adulthood was used. Application activities (3) included episodes of care (6), focused on specific practice areas (neonatal intensive care (NICU) and early intervention (EI), school-based and hospital-based, and sports/wellness and adults with disabilities).  Three TBL cohort sessions were conducted with 3 facilitators per cohort and participants (40 – 50) assigned to 10 teams.

RESULTS:  A post-workshop survey resulted in 133 responses and indicated 44 participants accessed pre-reading materials prior to the conference; 89 reported time, awareness, and accessibility to digital materials inhibited completion of the pre-reading.  Fifty-two participants indicated the pre-reading materials were beneficial.  Participants (107) reported case materials and facilitation promoted team discussions, with positive comments on team diversity (26). Participants (127) indicated team discussions were beneficial, also highlighting team diversity (49), critical thinking/collaboration strategies (24), and sharing expertise (12). Positive comments regarding TBL (135) focused on team discussions and diversity (75). Plans to implement content from the workshop was reported by 113 participants, specifying collaboration strategies (36), transition and adult services (21), evidence-based resources (19) and assessment tools (17) content.

CONCLUSION:  The percent (85%) of participants planning to implement content from the workshop supports the use of TBL and these case study materials.

Best Poster Award Nominee
213 – Participation in TBL Correlates with Performance in Females but not in Males in a Pipeline Course for Students Under-Represented in Medicine

Christine Collins, Gonzalo Carrasco, and Osvaldo Lopez
Cooper Medical School of Rowan University and Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine at Seton Hall

BACKGROUND: The Premedical Urban Leadership Summer Enrichment (PULSE) program at Cooper Medical School of Rowan University is designed to enhance the portfolio of students Underrepresented in Medicine (URM). As part of PULSE, a four-week medical microbiology course was developed with 6 TBL exercises and a final exam. The success of this course in increasing critical thinking and content knowledge was reported elsewhere (J Microbiol Biol Educ. 2016 17(3):370-379). In previous years we have noticed that female students tended to speak less often in TBL than male students. We were intrigued to see if this apparent lower participation was correlated with their preparation for TBL, assessed during iRAT, and their performance in the final exam.  During two years of this course we investigated how the degree of individual preparation for TBL relates to: (1) participation in group discussion; and (2) overall final exam scores.

DESCRIPTION:Student’s participation was quantified during gRAT and correlated with: (1) TBL scores (iRAT and gRAT); (2) pre-test scores (a test given at the course onset); and (3) post-test scores (final course examination).

RESULTS: Male students participated significantly (p<0.05) more in TBL than female students. In female, but not male, students we found a highly significant correlation between participation in TBL and: (1) iRAT scores (r=0.417, p<0.01); and (2) post-test scores (r=0.423, p<0.01).

CONCLUSION: Affirmation of a correct response in TBL exercises positively reinforces the self-confidence in students which makes their participation more efficient during the peer teaching that occurs during the gRAT portion of each TBL exercise. This important part of the TBL exercise seems to be even more significant for female students. Facilitators should be aware during intragroup and intergroup discussions on the need to encourage female student participation.