ERIC Number: ED220558
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Sep
Reference Count: 0
Unresolved Issues of Cooperative Learning.
Cook, Stuart W.
Proposals to use interracial/cross-ethnic learning teams in desegregated classrooms raise issues from research that demonstrate the complicated nature of the relationship between learning teams and classroom interracial relations. According to the research, relationships are affected by the characteristics of learning teams, namely competitiveness; group composition (usually of high achieving whites and lower achieving minorities); and the presence of a helping relationship where whites usually tutor their less well-prepared minority teammates. Various researchers indicate that positive interpersonal relationships encouraged by membership in groups are modified in competitive situations, when in-group relationships vary with team success or failure, and perceptions of other groups tend to become negative. In general, the interracial composition of learning teams and the tendency of competing teams to dislike one another lead to the expectation of minimal cross-racial friendship choices in desegregated classrooms. Conflicting findings have been found about the effect of white and minority students' relative academic competence and the helping relationships among interracial team members. Overall, however, research suggests pessimistic outcomes for cross-racial relationships in classrooms with learning teams. Yet, measures of friendship choices and classmate ratings indicate consistently improving cross-racial relations. The contradictory findings emphasize the need for more informative research on the issue. (Author/MJL)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Cooperative Learning