• Moawia Ali Hassan Alshiek, MD Department of Family & Community Medicine, Najran University
  • Abdulhadi Mohamed Elbashir, MRCSEd, MD Department of Surgery College of Medicine Najran University
  • Abdelrahman Mohamed Abdelrahman MD Department of Pathology College of Medicine Najran University


Problem Based Learning, Tutor


We are adopting a hybrid learning strategy in our college of which the problem-based learning is a cornerstone. The subject of problem based-tutoring is a matter of great debate among our staff members. Defining the role of and, the criteria of the tutor need to be clarified. We carried out this mini literature review to identify the responsibilities of the problem-based learning (PBL) tutor and to find who is better; content expert tutor or process expert tutor for the efficient running of the PBL session.


I. Chan LC. The role of a PBL tutor: a personal perspective. Kaohsiung J Med Sci. 2008;24(3 Suppl):S34–8.

II. Azer SA. Interactions between students and tutor in problem-based learning: The significance of deep learning. The Kaohsiung journal of medical sciences. 2009 May 1; 25(5):240-9.

III. Couto LB, Bestetti RB, Restini CB, Faria-Jr M, Romão GS. Brazilian medical students’ perceptions of expert versus non-expert facilitators in a (non) problem-based learning environment. Medical education online. 2015 Apr 15; 20.

IV. Zhang S, Yang H, Singh L. Increased Information Leakage from Text. InPIR@ SIGIR 2014 Jul 11 (pp. 41-42).

V. Lin YC, Huang YS, Lai CS, Yen JH, Tsai WC. Problem-based learning curriculum in medical education at Kaohsiung Medical University. The Kaohsiung journal of medical sciences. 2009 May 1; 25(5):264-70.

VI. Setterud HS, Johansson M, Edgren G, Amnér G, Persson E, Segersten U, Uhlin L, Lidskog M. Courses for tutors in problem-based learning. Current challenges at four Swedish universities. Högre utbildning. 2015 Jun 9; 5(1):47-64.

VII. Park SE, Susarla SM, Cox CK, Da Silva J, Howell TH. Do tutor expertise and experience influence student performance in a problem-based curriculum? Journal of Dental Education. 2007 Jun 1; 71(6):819-24.

VIII. Bosse HM, Huwendiek S, Skelin S, Kirschfink M, Nikendei C. Interactive film scenes for tutor training in problem-based learning (PBL): dealing with difficult situations. BMC medical education. 2010 Jul 6; 10(1):52.

IX. Chng E, Yew EH, Schmidt HG. Effects of tutor-related behaviours on the process of problem-based learning. Advances in Health Sciences Education. 2011 Oct 1; 16(4):491-503.

X. Chung EK, Hitchcock MA, Oh SA, Han ER, Woo YJ. The relationship between student perceptions of tutor performance and tutors' background in problem-based learning in South Korea. International Journal of Medical Education. 2011 Jan 1; 2:7.

XI. Groves M, Régo P, O'Rourke P. Tutoring in problem-based learning medical curricula: the influence of tutor background and style on effectiveness. BMC Medical education. 2005 Jun 7; 5(1):20.

XII. Lee GH, Lin CS, Lin YH. How experienced tutors facilitate tutorial dynamics in PBL groups. Medical teacher. 2013 Feb 1; 35(2): e 935-42.

XIII. Jung B, Tryssenaar J, Wilkins S. Becoming a tutor: exploring the learning experiences and needs of novice tutors in a PBL programme. Medical Teacher. 2005 Nov 1; 27(7):606-12.

XIV. Kassab SE, Hassan N, Abu-Hijleh MF, Sequeira RP. Lecturing skills as predictors of tutoring skills in a problem-based medical curriculum. Adv Med Educ Pract [Internet]. 2016;7:1–6.

XV. Neville AJ. The problem-based learning tutor: Teacher? Facilitator? Evaluator? Medical teacher. 1999 Jan 1; 21(4):393-401.

XVI. Mclean M, Arrigoni C. How we capitalised on casual PBL facilitators’ expertise and experience to add value to our medical programme. Medical teacher. 2016 Mar 3; 38(3):246-9.

XVII. Springer L, Stanne ME, Donovan SS. Effects of small-group learning on undergraduates in science, mathematics, engineering, and technology: A meta-analysis. Review of educational research. 1999 Mar; 69(1):21-51.

XVIII. Maudsley G. Roles and responsibilities of the problem based learning tutor in the undergraduate medical curriculum. British Medical Journal. 1999 Mar 6; 318(7184):657–61.

XIX. Leary H, Walker A, Shelton BE, Fitt MH. Exploring the relationships between tutor background, tutor training, and student learning: A problem-based learning meta-analysis. Interdisciplinary Journal of Problem-based Learning. 2013; 7(1):6.

XX. Ahmed AI, Elseed MA, El-Sheikh MA. Expert and non-expert tutors: role in problem-based learning. Med Sci Educ. 2007; 17(1):9-13.

XXI. Chan LC. The role of a PBL tutor: a personal perspective. The Kaohsiung journal of medical sciences. 2008 Mar 31; 24(3):S34-8.

XXII. Leary H, Walker A. Expert versus novice tutors: Impacts on student outcomes in problem-based learning. Pap Present Annu Meet Am Educ Res Assoc San Diego, CA [Internet]. 2009.

XXIII. McLean M. What can we learn from facilitator and student perceptions of facilitation skills and roles in the first year of a problem-based learning curriculum? BMC Medical Education. 2003 Oct 30; 3(1):9.

XXIV. Wang Q, Li H, Pang W. From PBL tutoring to PBL coaching in undergraduate medical education: an interpretative phenomenological analysis study. Medical Education Online. 2016; 21.

XXV. Walsh A. The tutor in problem-based learning: a novice’s guide [Internet]. Administrator, Annette F. Sciarra Program P for FD, editor. Hamilton: McMaster University. Hamilton, ON Canada; 2005. 44 p.

XXVI. Lim LA, Choy LF. Preparing staff for problem-based learning: Outcomes of a comprehensive faculty development program. International Journal of Research Studies in Education. 2014 Jul 23; 3(4).

XXVII. Wood DF. ABC of learning and teaching in medicine: Problem based learning. BMJ [Internet]. 2003;326(February 2007):328–30.

XXVIII. Beachey WD. A comparison of problem-based learning and traditional curricula in baccalaureate respiratory therapy education. Respiratory care. 2007 Nov 1; 52(11):1497-506.

XXIX. Conway J, Little P. From practice to theory: reconceptualising curriculum development for PBL. Problem-based learning. Educational innovation across disciplines–a collection of selected papers. Singapore: Temasek Centre for Problem-based Learning. 2000 Dec: 169-79.

XXX. Abdalla ME, Gaffar AM. The seven steps of PBL implementation: Tutor's manual. Abdelrahim Mutwakel Gaffar; 2011.

XXXI. Davis MH, Harden R. AMEE Medical Education Guide No. 15: Problem-based learning: a practical guide. Medical teacher. 1999 Jan 1; 2 1(2):130-40.

XXXII. Azer SA. Challenges facing PBL tutors: 12 tips for successful group facilitation. Medical teacher. 2005 Dec 1; 27(8):676-81.

XXXIII. Werth EP. Problem-based learning in police academies: Adult learning principles utilized by police trainers. Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 2009 Mar 1:134.

XXXIV. Savery JR, Duffy TM. Problem based learning: An instructional model and its constructivist framework. Educational technology. 1995 Sep; 35(5):31-8.

Additional Files



How to Cite

Moawia Ali Hassan Alshiek, MD, Abdulhadi Mohamed Elbashir, MRCSEd, MD, & Abdelrahman Mohamed Abdelrahman MD. (2017). TUTORS’ ROLE & RESPONSIBILITY IN (PBL): PROS AND CONS OF SUBJECT EXPERT AND TUTORIAL PROCESS EXPERT LITERATURE OVERVIEW. International Education and Research Journal (IERJ), 3(4). Retrieved from https://ierj.in/journal/index.php/ierj/article/view/754