Background: Team-based learning (TBL) is an innovative form of collaborative learning. The aim of TBL is to create a motivational context in which students become accountable for their learning. Aim: Student attendance at didactic lecture sessions in our school is usually poor. A modified TBL approach in lieu of lectures was undertaken for the first time in a large class (150 students). This communication reports on the challenges of its implementation in our setting and preliminary data on its effects on student performance. Method: Using computer-based evaluation followed by an in-class activity, a modified TBL approach was implemented over two semesters during an introductory basic science course. Data on student performance, student motivation and faculty reflection were collected and analysed. Results: This strategy had significantly enhanced students' class attendance. They performed better on the built-in TBL assessment (IRAT) compared to standard in-course tests. Besides content mastery, TBL approach could also instill useful attitudinal outcomes such as self-directed learning. Conclusions: The TBL strategy is a viable and refreshing alternative to the usual didactic faculty engagement with the teaching process. Students appear to do better in tests built-in within TBL as compared to stand-alone in-course tests.
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