In today’s information age, students have many resources for information but may lack skills to make sense of it all. We add value to educational experiences by devoting some instructional time to the development of analytical and problem solving skills. Therefore, lectures in an IBIS classroom should be brief (10 to 15 minutes) and punctuated with formative assessments or other team-based activities. Research supports the use of collaboration as a learning tool, therefore we recommend some class time be devoted to collaborative problem solving (reviewed by Freeman et al. 2014). The IBIS curriculum presents topics in a modular form. We utilize concepts of backward curricular design and the 5E instructional model in IBIS. In backwards design, Intended Learning Outcomes (iLO) are first identified and subsequently, course materials are designed to facilitate the constructivist approach of the 5E instructional model. Each module is centered on a framing scenario that serves to engage students in the material and provide a context for them to explore the iLOs. Most modules are structured to allow linked exploration of multiple concepts, therefore increasing scaffolding.
*Formative Assessments are a way for instructors and students to quickly assess student understanding and knowledge during class and can include:
- “clicker” questions (which may require team input to answer)
- a team brainstorming assignment
- problem sets
- case studies