Short Title

Problem-Based Learning in Online Principal Certification


Cohort Model, Problem-based Learning, Principal Certification, online


This qualitative study examined graduate/post-graduate student perceptions regarding the use of a cohort model and Project-Based Learning (PBL) in a completely online principal certification preparation classes. As part of a TEA funded grant, two districts (a cohort of 17 students) completed 24-semester hours of principal certification courses. All classes were online and emphasized PBL to engage the students in higher-level thinking skills. Participants responded to an open-ended survey regarding their perceptions of cohort and PBL experiences. Findings indicate graduate/post-graduate student perceptions were positive concerning both the cohort model and the PBL learning experiences. However, participants provided valuable feedback for improvements related to cohort organization, communication, and PBL introduction or presentation. Three themes emerged from the thematic analysis and peer debriefings: Theme One (T1)-Cohort Experience, Theme Two (T2)-PBL Experience, and Theme Three (T3)-the Interaction between Cohort and PBL Experiences.



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