Allowing plant pathology students to tackle fictitious or real crop problems during the course of their formal training not only teaches them the diagnostic process, but also provides for a better understanding of disease etiology. Such a problem-solving approach can also engage, motivate, and enthuse students about plant pathologgy in general. This paper presents examples of three problem-based approaches to diagnostic training utilizing freely available software. The first provides an adventure-game simulation where Students are asked to provide a diagnosis and recommendation after exploring a hypothetical scenario or case. Guidance is given oil how to create these scenarios. The second approach involves students creating their own scenarios. The third uses a diagnostic template combined with reporting software to both guide and capture students' results and reflections during a real diagnostic assignment.