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Team-based learning (TBL) is an innovative teacher-driven teaching method that uses a specific sequence of activities to foster individual and group responsibility in small groups of students that have been formed in order to answer questions and solve problems. TBL appears to have a number of benefits compared to conventional lecture-based teaching and traditional small group learning models. However, TBL has been modified in several ways for use in teaching within the curricula of medical schools. Research on the effects of TBL on the learning of students is still limited, and studies aimed at investigating whether the goals of TBL are achieved are rare. Medical schools that want to implement TBL in their curriculum and gain the benefits of TBL should ensure that those involved in the curricular process understand the essence of TBL. This review is primarily aimed at describing how dysfunctional TBL develops, and providing some suggestions regarding how to avoid it.
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