The effectiveness of project-based learning on Emirati undergraduate students in a microbiology course
Source of Publication
Learning and Teaching in Higher Education: Gulf Perspectives
Purpose: A composting project was introduced into an undergraduate microbiology course, to evaluate its efficacy against traditional lecturing for teaching environmental sustainability. Design/methodology/approach: The research project was a semester-long intervention. Three groups of students participated in the study: a group of 47 female undergraduate students were involved in a composting project, a group of 43 female students were exposed to a traditional lecture and a group of 34 students were the control group. A pretest and a posttest were used, along with poster presentations for the composting project students. In addition, a questionnaire was used to examine students' attitudes toward composting and their waste management practices. Findings: The project and lecture groups showed significant increases in average test-scores, with the post-project increase (20.9 points) being higher than the post-lecture increase (12.3 points). The questionnaire revealed that nonorganic waste recycling was practiced irregularly, while food waste was reused as livestock feed by 38% of the students. Composting was not common, but 23% of the students in the project group started household composting during the project. The students who were most satisfied with the project outcomes were willing to spend higher prices for a composting box (p = 0.036), showing a high correlation between awareness raising and environmental sustainability practices. Social implications: The project-based learning approach had more impact than the traditional lecture in teaching environmental sustainability to the students. The project succeeded in improving students' composting knowledge and increased their interest in continuing the composting practices at home. Originality/value: The study is the first attempt to measure the direct impact of composting education on Emirati students' knowledge of, and interest in environmental sustainable practices, vis-à-vis composting.
Education | Life Sciences
Composting, Environmental sustainability, Higher education, Microbiology, Project-based learning
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Ayoub Moubareck, Carole, "The effectiveness of project-based learning on Emirati undergraduate students in a microbiology course" (2022). All Works. 5514.
Indexed in Scopus
Open Access Type
Gold: This publication is openly available in an open access journal/series