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THE EFFECTS OF PROBLEM-BASED LEARNING STRATEGIES AND LEARNING STYLE ON STUDENTS' ACHIEVEMENT AND RETENTION IN A SOCIAL NETWORK ENVIRONMENT

W.A.J. Wan Yahaya, T. Tan

Centre for Instructional Technology and Multimedia (MALAYSIA)
This paper present the relationship between problem-based learning strategies and learning style on students' achievement and retention in chemistry. The two modes of Problem-based learning strategies are Individual Problem-based learning and collaborative learning, using similar validated instructional materials and were taught by experienced teachers following the protocols for a period of two months. The topic of Chemical Formulae and Equation was taught in the first month and after the second month, a retention test was performed to investigate how much information was retained by using the two learning strategies. The study employed a quasi-experimental design in a non-equivalent control group pretest-posttest design. A total of 155 Form Four students participated in this study. The independent variables were the two learning strategies and the dependent variables were the achievement which included the retention; the moderator variable was the learning style. Felder-Solomon Learning Style was utilized to gain the information about the participants' learning preference. Only one dimension in the Learning style index - active and reflective was used as a measuring tool for the learning preference. The two learning strategies involved in the study were individual problem-based learning and collaborative learning. The results showed that there was no significant interaction between the learning strategies and learning styles. However, there were some significant findings between the learning strategies and learning styles on the students' achievement and retention. This study concluded that Individual Problem-based Learning was more effective in retention and the Collaborative Learning was effective for the attainment in a short term period. This study had found that both Individual Problem-based Learning and Collaborative Learning were equally beneficial for both active and reflective learners.