Site URL: http://www.bie.org/
Content: The Buck Institute for Education’s (BIE’s) site offers quality free resources for project-based learning, an increasingly popular instructional strategy that emphasizes workforce readiness and development of students’ 21st-Century skills. The site defines project-based learning (PBL) as an extended process of inquiry in response to a complex question, problem, or challenge. In a nutshell, students use collaboration, communication and critical thinking to create products and presentations similar to what professionals produce in the “real world.”
Design: The site’s design is clean, well organized, nice-looking, and easy to navigate. Five featured articles and resources automatically scroll in the main column on the homepage, and a righthand column includes a search field and links to forum posts. The top bar offers choices such as videos, tools, research and more.
Review: BIE does offer paid workshops and books for purchase, but also provides plenty of free resources including planning forms, student rubrics and handouts. PBL Do-it-Yourself, an online tutorial, requires user registration. The site also provides a library of project examples as well as blogs and discussion forums. An extensive research section rounds out the content, sharing positive outcomes and best practices associated with PBL.
Bottom Line: This is a one-stop shop for PBL, boasting quality content that’s easy to access. Educators new to project-based learning will find the site an excellent starting point for bringing this valuable strategy into the classroom.