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. 2018, 6(11), 1487-1496
DOI: 10.12691/education-6-11-7
Open AccessArticle

Effect of Problem Based Learning through Differentiable Learning Styles in the Teaching of Statistics

Manuel P. Rosales Almendra1, and Bertha L. González Becerra1

1Centro Universitario de la Costa Sur, Universidad de Guadalajara, Guadalajara, México

Pub. Date: November 15, 2018

Cite this paper:
Manuel P. Rosales Almendra and Bertha L. González Becerra. Effect of Problem Based Learning through Differentiable Learning Styles in the Teaching of Statistics. American Journal of Educational Research. 2018; 6(11):1487-1496. doi: 10.12691/education-6-11-7


The goal of this study was to evaluate the effect of Problem Based Learning (PBL) using a strategy mediated by learning styles on variables of academic performance, attitude and motivation of students within a Statistics online course. Participants in the study were alumni of Statistics II subject course at the University of Guadalajara’s Regional Campus in Autlan. Two groups were formed: an experimental one lead through online supported instructional PBL strategy, and a control one attended in a classroom (traditional way). Three questionnaires were applied: first one identified predominant learning styles of students (PEPS), the second one attitude (CUAC) and third one was to interpret motivation (CUMO) towards the proposed learning environment; which were applied at the beginning and at the end of the course. Results of T-test and ANOVA test showed that the learning styles are not related to the instructional strategy of PBL; no differences were found in variables, attitude nor motivation when learning styles were compared within the PBL group. However, such results showed differences in academic performance, attitude and motivation among students of the PBL online group compared to the one that participated in a traditional way.

problem based-learning learning styles teaching statistic

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


[1]  Dunn, R., y Dunn, K., Learning styles/teaching styles: Should they, can they, be matched? Educational Leadership, 36(4), 238-244. (1979).
[2]  Franzoni, A. L., y Assar, S., Student learning styles adaptation method based on teaching strategies and electronic media. Journal of Educational Technology & Society, 12(4), 15-29. (2009).
[3]  Lave, J., y Wenger, E., Situated learning: Legitimate periperal participation. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. (1991).
[4]  Rootzé, H. (2007). Learning statistics – in a web-based and non-linear way. International Statistical Institute. [Online] Available:
[5]  Yilmaz, M. Y., y Akkoyunlu, B. The effect of learning styles on achievement in different learning environments. Turkish Online Journal of Educational Technology, 8(4), 43-50. (2009).
[6]  Hao, Y. H., y Chi-Yin, Y. S., Handbook of research on practices and outcomes in e-learning: Issues and trends. Hershey, NY: Information Science Reference. (2010).
[7]  Vidic, A. D., The impact of problem-based learning on statistical thinking of engineering and technical high school students. En Reading (Ed.), Proceedings of the eighth international conference on teaching statistics (icots8). Ljubljana, Slovenia. (2010).
[8]  DERN. Evaluación del plan de estudios de la carrera de ingeniería en recursos naturales y agropecuarios. Autlán, Jalisco. México. (2009).
[9]  Bilgin, I., Senoca, E., y Sozbilir, M., The effects of problem-based learning instruction on university students' performance of conceptual and quantitative problems in gas concepts. Journal of Mathematics, Science & Technology Education, 5(2). 153-164. (2009).
[10]  Liu, M., Horton, L., Olmanson, J., y Toprac, P. A., study of learning and motivation in a new media enriched environment for middle school science. Educational Technology Research & Development, 59(2), 249-265. (2011).
[11]  Own, Z.-Y., Chen, D.-U., y Chiang, H.-R. A study on the effect of using problem-based learning in organic chemistry for web-based learning. International Journal of Instructional Media, 37(4), 417-430. (2010).
[12]  Korucu, E. N.,Comparing with problem and cooperative based learning method applied in primary schools on the success of the students. Dissertation Abstracts International,. Konya: Selçuk University Department of Primary Education Program in Science Education. (2007).
[13]  Hsieh, C., y Knight, L., Problem-based learning for engineering students: An evidence-based comparative study. The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 34(1), 25-30. (2008).
[14]  Akkoyunlu, B., y Soylu, M. Y., A study of student’s perceptions in a blended learning environment based on different learning styles. Journal of Educational Technology & Society, 11(1), 183-193. (2008).
[15]  Morrison, G. R., Ross, S. M., y Kemp, J. E. Designing effective instruction (5 ed.): John Wiley & Sons. (2005).
[16]  Moallem, M., Accommodating individual differences in the design of online learning environments: A comparative study. Journal of Research on Technology in Education, 40(2), 217-245. (2008).
[17]  Felder, R., y Brent, R., Understanding student differences. Journal of Engineering Education, 94(1), 57-72. (2005).
[18]  Kamuche, F. U., Do learning & teaching styles affect students’ performance? An empirical study. Journal of Business & Economics Research, 3(9), 35-40. (2005).
[19]  Barrows, H. S., y Tamblyn, R. H., Problem-based learning: An approach to medical education. New York, NY: Springer Publishing. (1980).
[20]  Oberlander, J., y Talbert-Johnson, C. Using technology to support problem-based learning. Action in Teacher Education, 25(4), 48-57. (2004).
[21]  Moore, D. S., New pedagogy and new content: The case of statistics. International Statistical Review, 65(2), 123-165. (1997).
[22]  Sendag, S., y Odabas, F. H., Effects of an online problem based learning course on content knowledge acquisition and critical thinking skills. Computers & Education, 53(1), 132-141. (2009).
[23]  Woo, Y. Y. J., Engaging new audiences: Translating research into popular media. . Educational Researcher, 37(6), 321-329. (2008).
[24]  Dunn, R., Dunn, K., y Price, G. E., Learning styles inventory. Lawrence, KA: Price Systems. (1998).
[25]  Dunn, R., y Griggs, S. A. Practical approaches to using learning styles in higher education. En R. Dunn y S. A. Griggs (Eds.), Practical approaches to using learning styles in higher education (pp. 19-31). Wesport, CT: Bergin & Garvey. (2000).
[26]  Gregorc, A. F., y Ward, H. B. Implications for learning and teaching: A new definition for individual. 61(406), 20-26. (1977).
[27]  Tseng, C. R., Chu, H. C., Hwang, G. J., y Tsai, C. C., Development of an adaptive learning system with two sources of personalization information. Computers and Education, 51(2), 776-786. (2008).
[28]  Chang, Y.-C., Kao, W.-Y., Chu, C.-P., y Chiu, C.-H., A learning style classification mechanism for e-learning. Computers & Education, 53(2), 273-285. (2009).
[29]  Dunn, R., y Dunn, K. Teaching elementary students through their individual learning styles: Needham Heights, MA: Allyn & Bacon. (1992).
[30]  Hidi, S., y Harackiewicz, J. M., Motivating the academically unmotivated: A critical issue for the 21st century. Review of Educational Research, 70(2), 151-179. (2000).
[31]  Taradi, S. K., Taradi, M., Radic, K., y Pokrajac, N., Blending problem-based learning with web technology positively impacts student learning outcomes in acid-base physiology. Advances in Physiology Education, 29(1), 35-39. (2005).
[32]  Thurmond, V. A., Wambach, K., Connors, H. R., y Frey, B. B., Evaluation of student satisfaction: Determining the impact of a web- based environment by controlling for student characteristics. American Journal of Distance Education, 16(3), 169-190. (2010).
[33]  Yelland, N., y Masters, J., Changing learning contexts with technology: Design and innovation in creating new learning materials. Paper presentadado en la HERDSA Annual International Conference, Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia. (2000). [Online].
[34]  Chin-Chung, T., The preferences toward constructivist internet-based learning environments among university students in taiwan. Computers in Human Behavior, 24(1), 16-31. (2008).
[35]  Petchtone, Puangtong, Chaijaroen, y Sumalee., The development of web-based learning environments model to enhance cognitive skills and critical thinking for undergraduate students. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 46(Supplement C). (2012).
[36]  Solvie, P., y Kloek, M., Using technology tools to engage students with multiple learning styles in a constructivist learning environment. Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 7(2), 7-27. (2007).
[37]  Dunn, R., Dunn, K., y Price, G. E., Productivity environmental preference survey. Lawrence, KS: Price Systems. (1985).
[38]  Felder, R., y Silverman, L., Learning and teaching styles in engineering education. Journal of Engineering Education, 78(7), 674-681. (1988).
[39]  Kolb, D. A., Learning style inventory. Boston, MA: McBer and Company. (1985).
[40]  Dag, F., y Geçer, A. Relations between online learning and learning styles. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 1(1), 862-871. (2009).
[41]  Hardaker, G., Cognitive learning styles and digital equity: Searching for the middle way. International journal of inclusive education, 14(8), 777-794. (2010).
[42]  Sun, K.-T., Lin, Y.-C., y Yu, C. J. A study on learning effect among different learning styles in a web-based lab of science for elementary school students. Computer & Education, 50, 1411-1422. (2007).
[43]  Connor, D., Davies, N., y Holmes, P., Using real data and technology to develop statistical thinking. Yearbook (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics), 68, 185-194. (2006).
[44]  Kilsheimer, E. J., Iyer, R., y Eastman, K. L., Business students’ perceptions, attitudes, and satisfaction with interactive technology: An exploratory study. Journal of Education for Business, Journal of Education for Business(86), 1. (2011).
[45]  Masiello, I., Ramberg, R., y Lonka, K., Attitudes to the application of a web-based learning system in a microbiology course. Computers & Education, 45(2), 171-185. (2005).
[46]  Bell, A., y Morris, G., Engaging professional learning in online environments. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 25(5), 700-713. (2009).
[47]  Fang-Ying, Y., y Cheng-Chieh, C., Examining high-school students’ preferences toward learning environments, personal beliefs and concept learning in web-based contexts. Computers & Education, May 2009, Pages 848-857, 52 (4), 848-857. (2009).
[48]  Cázarez, C. A., El papel de la motivacion intrinsica, los estilos de aprendizaje y estrategias metacognitivas en la búsqueda efectiva de información online. Pixel-Bit. Revista de Medios y Educación, 35, 73-85. (2009).
[49]  Law, K. M. Y., Lee, V. C. S., y Yu, Y. T. Learning motivation in e-learning facilitated computer programming courses. Computers & Education, 55(1), 218-228. (2010).
[50]  Beluce, A. C., y Oliveira, K. L. D., Students motivation for learning in virtual learning environments. Paidéia (Ribeirão Preto), 25, 105-113. (2015).
[51]  Bryndum, S., y Jerónimo, M. J. A., La motivación en los entornos telemáticos. Revista de Educación a Distancia, 5(13). (2005). [Online]. Available:
[52]  Linnenbrink, E. A., y Pintrich, P. R., Motivation as an enabler for academic success. School Psychology Review, 31(3), 313-327. (2002).
[53]  Lynch, D. J., Motivational factors, learning strategies and resources management as predictors of course grades. College Student Journal, 40(2), 423-428. (2006).
[54]  Herrington, J., Reeves, T. C., Oliver, R., y Woo, Y., Designing authentic activities in web-based courses. Journal of Computing in Higher Education, 16(1), 3-29. (2004).
[55]  Lourdusamy, A., Khine, M. S., y Sipusic, M., Collaborative learning tool for presenting authentic case studies and its impact on student participation. Journal of Educational Technology Systems, 31(4), 381-392. (2002).
[56]  Woo, Y., Herrington, J., Agostinho, S., y Reeves, T. C. Implementing authentics tasks in web-based learning environments. EDUCAUSE Quarterly, 3, 36-43. (2007).
[57]  Curry, L. Integrating concepts of cognitive or learning style: A review with attention to psychometric standards. Otawa: Canadian College of Health Service Executives. (1987).
[58]  Creswell, J. W. Educational research: Planning, conducting, and evaluating quantitative and qualitative research. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson/Merrill Prentice Hall. (2008).
[59]  Myers, J. L., y Well, A. D., Research design and statistical analysis (2 ed.). Mahawah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. (2003).
[60]  Harris, R. N., Dwyer, W. O., y Leeming, F. C., Are learning styles relevant in web-based instruction? Journal of Educational Computing Research, 29(1), 13-28. (2003).