American Journal of Educational Research
ISSN (Print): 2327-6126 ISSN (Online): 2327-6150 Website: Editor-in-chief: Ratko Pavlović
Open Access
Journal Browser
American Journal of Educational Research. 2017, 5(3), 316-323
DOI: 10.12691/education-5-3-13
Open AccessArticle

Development of Student Accountability in a Project-based Learning Environment

Abu-Hussain Jamal1, and Oleg Tilchin1

1Al-Qasemi Academic College of Education, Baqa El-Gharbieh, Israel

Pub. Date: March 29, 2017

Cite this paper:
Abu-Hussain Jamal and Oleg Tilchin. Development of Student Accountability in a Project-based Learning Environment. American Journal of Educational Research. 2017; 5(3):316-323. doi: 10.12691/education-5-3-13


In this paper, we propose an approach to development of student accountability for study of a subject in a PBL environment through its specific organization by a teacher. It allows to include process of developing accountability of students for PBL to accountability area of a teacher. Accountability of the students for PBL is developed by a seven-step process for the specific organization of the PBL environment. The steps are preparing the sample-project, setting initial knowledge assessments, ensuring study of a subject by a class through performance of the sample-project, promoting self-formation of collaborative student groups for performing projects of different levels of complexity, adapting PBL to knowledge dynamics of students by setting the adaptive assessments of knowledge, sustaining collaborative performance of the project tasks, and measuring student accountability. The stages of development of student accountability for PBL conformed to the steps of organizing the PBL environment are determined. The stages are engendering concern about the need to take accountability for studying the subject matter in the PBL environment, motivating students to take accountability for acquiring the subject-relevant knowledge while performance of the sample-project, the habituation of students to take accountability for study of a subject through performing a sample-project, inducing and guiding of students to take accountability for collaborative performance of projects of different levels of complexity, stimulating students to hold accountability for collaborative performance of the projects, reinforcing student accountability for collaborative performance of the project tasks, and evaluating development of student accountability and a level of accountability skills.

accountability of students project-based learning

Creative CommonsThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit


[1]  Abu-Hussain, J., Essawi, M., & Tilchin,O. (2014). Accountability for project-based Collaborative Learning, International Journal of Higher Education, published by Sciedu Press, 3(1), 127-135.
[2]  Abu-Hussain, J., & Tilchin, O. (2016). Teachers’ accountability for adaptive project-based learning, American Journal of Educational Research, 4(5), 420-426.
[3]  Aguilar, G., & Kaijiri, K. (2007). Design overview of an adaptive computer-based assessment system, Interactive Educational Multimedia, 14, 116-130.
[4]  Anderson, T. (2008). The Theory and Practice of Online Learning, Athabasca University Press.
[5]  Barkley, E., Cross, K. P., Howell, M. C. (2004). Collaborative Learning Techniques: A Handbook for College Faculty (Paperback), Jossey-Bass; 1 edition.
[6]  Bell, Stephanie (2010). Project-Based Learning for the 21st century: Skills for the future, The Clearing House, 83: 39-43, Copyright C Taylor & Francis Group.
[7]  Bender, W.N. (2012). Project-Based Learning: Differentiating Instruction for the 21st Century, Corwin.
[8]  Brown, J. (2008). Student-centered instruction: Involving students in their own education. Music Educators Journal, 94 (5), 30-35.
[9]  Brusilovsky, P., Peylo, C. (2003). Adaptive and Intelligent Web-based Educational Systems. International Journal of Artificial Intelligence in Education, 13, 156-169.
[10]  Dongsik, K., & Seunghee, L. (2002). Designing collaborative reflection supporting tools in E-project-based learning environments, Journal of Interactive Learning Research, 13(4), 375-392.
[11]  Doyle, T., & Tagg, J. (2008). Helping Students Learn in a Learner-Centered Environment: A Guide to Facilitating Learning in Higher Education, Stylus Publishing.
[12]  Ellis, T. J., & Hafner, W. (2008). Building a Framework to Support Project-Based Collaborative Learning Experiences in an Asynchronous Learning Network. Interdisciplinary Journal of E-Learning and Learning Objects, 4, 167-190.
[13]  Ettington, Deborah, R., & Camp, Richaurd, R. (2002). Facilitating transfer of knowledge between group projects and work teams, Journal of Management Education, 26(4), 356-379.
[14]  Felder, R. (2010, April 18). Student-centered teaching and learning. Available at:
[15]  Felder, R.M., & Brent, R. (2001). Effective strategies for cooperative learning, Available at:
[16]  Frye, R. (2008). Assessment, accountability, and student learning outcomes, Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA, Available at:
[17]  Hassel, H., & Lourey, J. (2005). The dea(r)th of student accountability. College Teaching, 53(1), 2-13.
[18]  Lazarinis, F., Green, S., & Pearson, E. (2010). Creating personalized assessments based on learner knowledge and objectives in a hypermedia Web testing application. Computers & Education, 55(4), 1732-1743.
[19]  Lopez, A.V. et al. (2002). Embedding facilitation in group support systems to manage distributed group behavior, Proceedings of the 35th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, 7-10 Jan.
[20]  Lovie-Kitchin, J. (2001). Reflecting on assessment, In Schwartz, P. et al. (Eds), Problem-Based Learning: Case Studies, Experience and Practice. London: Kogan Page.
[21]  Macdonald, R., & Savin-Baden, M. (2004). A briefing on assessment in problem-based learning, Learning and Teaching Support Network Available at: _learning.pdf.
[22]  Maltese, R. (2012). Project Based Learning, 25 Projects for 21st Century Learning, Dog Ear Publishing.
[23]  Markham, T. (2012). Project Based Learning Design and Coaching Guide, Heart IQ Press.
[24]  Mergendoller, J., Markham, T., Ravitz, J., & Larmer, J. (2006). Pervasive Management of Project Based Learning: Teachers as Guides and Facilitators, Buck Institute for Education
[25]  Merriam-Webster (2010). Accountability - definition. Retrieved from Merriam-Webster:
[26]  Papanastasiou, Elena (2014). Adaptive assessment, Encyclopedia of Science Education, Springer, 1-2.
[27]  Ravitz, J. (2009). Introduction: Summarizing Findings and Looking Ahead to a New Generation of PBL Research. Interdisciplinary Journal of Problem-based Learning, 3(1) Available at:
[28]  Reeves, B. D. (2004). Accountability for Learning: How Teachers and School Leaders Can Take Charge, Association for Supervision & Curriculum Deve.
[29]  Savery, J. R. (2006). Overview of Problem-based learning: Definitions and Distinctions, The Interdisciplinary Journal of Problem-based learning, 1(1), 9-20.
[30]  Samuel, M., & Chiche, S. (2004). The Power of Personal Accountability: Achieve What Matters to You, Xephor Press; 1st edition.
[31]  Schoof, P. M. (2010). Student accountability in student-centered learning, West Point, NY, Available at:
[32]  Shavelson, R. (2009). Measuring college learning responsibly: Accountability in a new era, Stanford University Press.
[33]  Soller, A. (2007). Adaptive Support for Distributed Collaboration. In: Brusilovsky Peter, Kobsa Alfred, Nejdl Wolfgang (Eds.). The Adaptive Web, Methods and Strategies Web Personalization, Springer.
[34]  Solomon, G. (2003). Project-Based Learning: A Primer. Technology and Learning, 23(6).
[35]  Stanton, P., & Fairfax, D. (2007). Establishing individual accountability for learning in an Exam-less, Group Project Course, Proceedings of the 2007 Middle Atlantic Section Fall Conference of the American Society for Engineering Education1-9.
[36]  Thomas, J. W. (2000). A review of research on project-based learning Available, at:
[37]  Tiwana, A. (1999). The Knowledge Management Toolkit. Practical Techniques for Building a Knowledge Management System, Prentice Hall.
[38]  Weinberger, A., Reiserer, M., Ertl, B., Fischer, F., & Mandl, H. (2003). Facilitating Collaborative Knowledge Construction in Computer-mediated Learning with Structuring Tools (Research report No. 158). Munich, Germany: Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Institute for Empirical Pedagogy and Pedagogical Psychology. Research report No. 158 Available at: