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What is Scenario-based learning?

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The Experiential Learning Center’s SBL Projects

The scenario-based, problem-based learning projects at De Anza College’s Experiential Learning Center work with SRI International and the NSF ATE community to develop and implement scenario-based scenarios and tasks; build an online learning community for community college and university faculty and researchers; develop and offer Extended Care professional development opportunities for faculty and instructional designers; mentor faculty in action research focused on understanding learning in their classrooms; and develop and advocate for principled assessment of learning in science, technology, and engineering.

Destination: Problem-Based Learning
A National Science Foundation ATE Project DUE 0903276 (2009-2013)

In our new project, Foothill De Anza Community College District and SRI International will explore more effective ways to adapt and disseminate scenario based learning (SBL) instructional materials and modules on a national level. We will use action research to engage faculty in examining problems around the challenges of SBL instruction and dissemination to faculty colleagues. The existing SBL online community will support this effort and be expanded with a growing library of resources and alliances. The development of three prototype online wizards will be pilot-tested to see if they can support community college instructors in self directed development of SBL tasks and assessments. The existing SBL online community and materials developed in earlier grants—tasks, instructor guides, principled assessment items, and professional development workshops—will form the basis of this effort.

Scenario-Based Learning in Technical Education
A National Science Foundation ATE Project DUE 0603297 (2006-2009)

The SBL in Tech Ed project worked with community college and university faculty to create and implement scenario-based tasks. SBL scenarios consist of tasks, requirements, resources, and reflection questions in an online intranet site for a virtual company. It can be part of a course or the entire course can be SBL. See Scenarios for a list of our scenarios-based tasks,instructor guides, support material, and principled assessments items.

Final Report

This project has done an outstanding job of creating and implementing scenario-based learning units in technical education programs. This a capability that will be increasingly important in technology education, as it provides students with simulations of workplace problems that they will face in their careers. It also has the distinct advantage of creating closer working relationships between education and industry. Congratulations on a successful project.

Robert Gibbs, Ph.D., NSF Program Officer. SBL in Tech Ed Project NSF DUE #0603297 (2006-2009)

Experiential Learning Model for Security Technician Education
A National Science Foundation ATE Project DUE # 0302894 (2003-2006)

Our SBL work began with adapting the Story-Based learning model used at Carnegie Mellon Silicon Valley for the community college audience.

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