Situation & Scenario Based Learning

First developed in the early 1990s SSBL, Situation & Scenario Based learning, are now considered among one of the major pedagogical principles for learning environments.

Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn. – Benjamin Franklin

What is SSBL and how can it be applied?

SSBL motivates and interests participants by using situations and scenarios relevant to their own professional lives.

Situation-based Learning

Situation-based learning claims that students are more inclined to learn more by actively participating in the learning experience. When applied to language learning participants acquire their target language far more effectively when immersed in a particular situation. The aim is to let participants improve their skills through its practical use in certain real situations from their actual lives. Effectively, the participant’s life is used as the study material. This method is highly motivating for participants as it helps them to perform their tasks with greater success and confidence.

An example might be a participant who has an important meeting in the near future and needs to practice and improve their performance. The coaching sessions could include role playing the situation improving any areas the participant lacks. These areas may include transmitting confidence and being persuasive, body language, language, cultural awareness, different approaches to negotiate.

Scenario-based learning

Scenario-based learning often uses PBL (Problem Based Learning) and critical thinking activities for participants to discuss and work on the different possible scenarios within a situation. By discussing and practicing these possible scenarios, in a safe environment, participants will greatly improve the possible outcomes when they encounter these scenarios in real life. This method is especially beneficial for teams as it also helps to increase team cohesion and motivation.

An example of scenario based learning using critical thinking. A business is suffering from a financial crisis and needs to create a plan to survive and improve revenues. Coaching sessions might include a series of activities to practice possible scenarios and determine which would be the best option. Doing a SWOT analysis to gain more insight, brainstorming and exploring possible solutions/ scenarios. These scenarios might be restructuring staff functions, streamlining processes or changing the business model.

To ensure SSBL is effective and participants retain learned material and concepts repetition and meaningful practice is necessary.

Without a doubt SSBL provides a much richer eclectic and meaningful learning environment in which participants quickly learn to manage different situations in their actual lives. In today’s multicultural community intercultural interactions are fairly usual however, knowing how to interact with different cultures is not so easy. SSBL plays an important role by helping participants to deal with these situations.


ToddAcerca de Todd

Over 15 years experience in different countries working with professionals to improve their communication skills. (Clients include: Coca Cola-Spain, IBM-Portugal/Spain, Randstad-Spain, Telefonica-Spain, Santander Group, Vodafone-Spain, DKV, Burson Marsteller, Accenture-Belgium, ESA-France/Spain, SEPI, Siemens-Germany, EASA-Germany, MONEX Europe) ..

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