Team-based learning: a practical guide: AMEE guide no. 65

Med Teach. 2012;34(5):e275-87. doi: 10.3109/0142159X.2012.651179. Epub 2012 Apr 4.


Team-based learning™ (TBL) is an instructional strategy developed in the business school environment in the early 1990s by Dr Michaelsen who wanted the benefits of small group learning within large classes. In 2001, a US federal granting agency awarded funds for educators in the health sciences to learn about and implement the strategy in their educational programs; TBL was put forward as one such strategy and as a result it is used in over 60 US and international health science professional schools. TBL is very different from problem-based learning (PBL) and other small group approaches in that there is no need for multiple faculty or rooms, students must come prepared to sessions, and individual and small groups of students (teams) are highly accountable for their contributions to team productivity. The instructor must be a content-expert, but need not have any experience or expertise in group process to conduct a successful TBL session. Students do not need any specific instruction in teamwork since they learn how to be collaborative and productive in the process. TBL can replace or complement a lecture-based course or curriculum.

MeSH terms

  • Consensus
  • Educational Measurement / methods
  • Group Processes*
  • Humans
  • Learning*
  • Patient Care Team
  • Peer Review / methods
  • United States