ERIC Number: ED345672
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991
Reference Count: N/A
Cooperative Learning in Higher Education: An Alternative Approach to Collegiate Instruction.
Kealy, Ronald P.; Witmer, Kenneth D., Jr.
This paper presents an alternative instructional strategy, cooperative learning, and argues that it can help to address the recognized need for greater student participation in learning at the higher education level. Cooperative learning is presented as a complement to the traditional lecture/discussion format. The method is described as encouraging students to work together on structured learning tasks which can follow the presentation of information by the instructor or be used periodically during a presentation to allow time for students to process the content presented. Elements of cooperative learning are presented including positive interdependence, individual accountability, and social skill development. An examination of the research related to this method looks at its effect on academic achievement, higher level thinking skills, social interaction, and positive attitudinal responses. A concluding section on implementation advocates that college instructors consider adding cooperative learning to their teaching repertoire beginning with some background reading in the area, and selection of a simple structure to try before moving on to more complex activities. The paper also notes the usefulness of establishing teams within the class from the beginning of the course for efficient integration of cooperative activities. Included are 20 references. (JB)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Administrators; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Higher Order Learning