Recently, there is a broad consensus that problem-based learning (PBL), a pedagogical approach widely accepted in medical education, has a positive effect on active learning and learning outcomes [1,2,3].
PBL is characterized as problem-triggered, student-centered, and tutor-facilitated to achieve active lifelong learning [1, 4,5,6].
The performance of these two groups was significantly different in the Late-Half but not in the Early-Half PBL tutorials.
Furthermore, a significant improvement was observed in the students with strong CT but not weak CT dispositions.
Critical thinking (CT) is usually viewed as a philosophical concept, referred to characteristics of the individual, personality traits or habits of mind .
It is a pervasive and self-rectifying human phenomenon, referring to the dispositions and skills revealing what is authentic, what to believe, why it is and how it happens.
Our work suggested that the open-mindedness of the CT disposition is the primary factor that determines the improvement of the preparation dimensions in the PBL process.
Following the constructivist theory, the ideal learning process suggested that learner should acquire knowledge and skills actively, and the objective of education is to help students to learn how to learn.
CT disposition positively correlates to a students’ PBL performance.
Students with stronger CT dispositions perform better in the PBL process and obtain higher scores.