How is Problematization Constructed in Problem-Based in Biology?

Emmy González Lillo, Marcela Jarpa Azagra, Carmen López Ferrero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the science field, the use of Problem-Based Learning (PBL) methodology is becoming increasingly common, and the learning outcome is often captured in a written report. In our study, we consider the problem-solving report a formative-evaluative genre that has a dual purpose: to be a learning activity and to be an evaluation product. From the genre theory (Swales, 1990, 2004), we describe the rhetorical organization of this genre by means of a corpus of written texts in the area of biology and, subsequently, we analyze the first move in depth, considering, on the one hand, the levels of reading comprehension (Cassany, 2006; Gordillo & Flórez, 2009; Guevara, Cárdenas & Reyes, 2015) and, on the other, the taxonomies of learning (Bloom et al. (1956) reformulated by Anderson & Krathwohl, 2001; Biggs & Collis, 1982, 1989). The results indicate that there are four rhetorical moves that possess different communicative purposes. In the case of the first move, problematization, there are three types of questions that account for the level of abstraction of acquired knowledge and the problematization that the students carry out based on the case presented in the PBL. In this move, transactional interrogative statements predominate (Escandell, 2013), using simple discursive resources such as definition, description, classification, or enumeration. Since the genre has not been described before, it is necessary to deconstruct it and model it in order to understand its scope in disciplinary training in the field of science.

Translated title of the contribution¿Cómo se Construye la Problematización en el Aprendizaje Basado en Problemas en Biología?
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)234-259
Number of pages26
JournalRevista Signos
Issue number112
StatePublished - 2023


  • Aprendizaje basado en problemas
  • Problem-based learning
  • evaluative genres
  • géneros evaluativos
  • informe de resolución de problemas
  • levels of reading comprehension
  • niveles de comprensión lectora
  • problem-solving report
  • taxonomies of learning
  • taxonomías de aprendizaje


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