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Project-based Learning and Project Management – Part 1

25/04/2016

Does Project-based Learning (PBL) have much to do with Project Management (PM)? If so, how are they related? What are the overlaps? How can students benefit from a wealth of PMI resources and tools? And, more importantly (for me anyway) how can Agile mindset be applied to PBL? 

These questions have been at the back of my mind for quiet sometime. In fact, I’ve been churning these questions for so long, I can’t really remember exactly when I started asking them. What are the answers? Where can I get the answers? Are there any answers? This is where things start getting messy. And as soon as things start getting messy, I tend to run away and take comfort in a cup of coffee, or a scoop of ice-cream, or if it’s really complicated – both!

OK, I’ve got my favourite ice-cream and my coffee by my side, and here I am still wondering… I have to focus. In order to focus, or narrow down my thinking, I must start with a brain-storming! Here it goes:

PBL, PM, PMI, Agile, Scrum, training, development, distance, flexible, authentic, assessment, inquiry, problem, collaboration, creativity, practice, resourceful, stakeholders, risks, interpreting, interpreters, languages, profiles, process, scope, WBS, packages, project life-cycle, cost, estimate, deliverables, project integration, CPM, communication, feasibility…

First things first, there’s a clear difference between doing a project and PBL – refer to the following references for definitions and examples:

Secondly, what does PM involve? Have a look at the following site:

Thirdly, why mention Agile? What does software development methodology have to do with dealing with messy projects? More on ‘messy’ later. But you may wish to have a look at the following sites for its application in the educational settings:

Last but not least, how does this all relate to Virtual Worlds? After all, this blog site is about ‘multi-user virtual environments for real education’ right?

Imagine, if you will, a virtual environment in which prospective interpreters could practise their interpreting skills, from any location (preferably with fast Internet connection!), using authentic situations and projects, where their interactions are observed and assessed by trainers, assessors and fellow peers?

This is the idea, and I haven’t got a research question as yet. But, the impetus for this idea came about from of a number of real-life situations that are currently taking place, locally and internationally.

On a local context –

I haven’t started collating resources on the global context, but I’m sure watching current affairs or following news around the world would be enough to find out about the current refugee situation.

I call this ‘Project: Language Mediators’. This is the initial ‘brain dump’ and comments, suggestions, recommendations are most welcome!

Thank you for your interest.

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