Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln



Purpose – The purpose of this study is to make an attempt to explore the problem-based learning (PBL) method supported student learning in out of class space of Learning Commons (LC) for adopting PBL method based user-centered learning pedagogy at LC of academic libraries.

Design/methodology/approach – The study was conducted for the identification of problem-based learning activities in out of class space informal learning at LC. A comprehensive review of the learning commons and problem-based learning method literature enabled the formulation of the constructs and few hypotheses were formulated that constitute a conceptual user-centered PBL activity based learning model. To determine the final form of the user-centered problem-based learning model, survey data collected from university students of Japan was analyzed by the partial least squares technique to confirm the model and validate the hypotheses.

Findings – The results of the study has evidenced that of the twelve hypotheses was supported strongly and confirms that LC completely supports problem-based learning in out of class space. Users are pursuing self-responsible learning and knowledge sharing and acquisition plays a vital role for solving learning problems in the group learning process and it has been determined as a must PBL phase for LC. Users showed a great interest in PBL based informal learning for solving their course work learning problems in out of class spaces of LC.

Originality/value – This problem-based learning method supported user-centered learning in out of class space is one of the first to holistically evident that LC support PBL activities in informal learning and has been determined as Continuum of Learning in the study and created user-centered problem-based learning pedagogy in academia.

Paper type – Research paper.