Why this blog?

 “There are too many blogs – I’ll never write one”

A problem

Stephen Pile, the author of The Book of Heroic Failures* – a soon to be bestseller, declared in 1977 that he would never write a book -he was wrong.

Until recently this has been my feeling too. There are too many great blogs out there on the areas I would blog about – so what was the point.  Seems I was wrong too.

So what changed?

Simple really – I realised that there was something I was interested in and that I would like to build a blog around. Also there don’t seem to be many other blogs on Problem/Project Based Learning in English Language Teaching (in Turkey)**.

I first came across Problem Based Learning

“a pedagogical technique that situates learning in complex-problem solving contexts.” (Hmelo-Silver 2004, p.261)

during my studies for my MA in TESOL & Technology at the University of Manchester. For my dissertation I created an eight week, wiki-based, integrated skills course in which PBL played a central role. That was a few years ago.

PBL has remained in the back of my mind (and the front whenever I get to bore people about it). Recently I have been lucky enough to become involved in planning for a possible PBL component to courses at my university. The process of researching and thinking about PBL again as well planning and working with colleagues has left me with many ideas I wish to share.


So, I have started this blog.

I intend it to be…well I’m not entirely sure. There are things I want to say but also it would be nice to get ideas from other people with an interest too in using PBL in English Language Teaching.


Hmelo-Silver, C E 2004, ‘Problem based Learning: What and How Do Students Learn?, Educational Psychology Review, Vol. 16 No. 3, pp.253-266.

Pile, S. 1979. The Book of Heroic Failures, Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd, London.


More on the Book of Heroic Failures.

** Here is an edutopia.org article on the differences between Project Based Learning and Problem Based Learning.



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