ERIC Number: ED390947
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Dec
Reference Count: N/A
Alternatives to Ability Grouping: Still Unanswered Questions. ERIC/CUE Digest Number 111.
Critics suggest that ability grouping all too often limits the instructional experience of lower-track students and that students placed in low tracks at a young age may never be transferred to upper tracks where higher-order skills are typically taught. As a result of this growing criticism, schools are increasingly eliminating ability grouping. Numerous alternatives to tracking have been proposed. Perhaps the most common model for detracking schools is cooperative learning, which is typically thought of as a form of heterogeneous grouping. Some schools divide a heterogeneously grouped classroom into smaller groups for reading and mathematics instruction. Other schools have allowed students to sort themselves according to their own interests. Still other schools have merged academic and vocational tracks into a single integrated program. While more research is needed on the specific effects of these efforts to detrack schools, it is evident that changes are being considered in many schools. (Contains 15 references.) (SLD)
Descriptors: Ability Grouping, Academic Achievement, Cooperative Learning, Disadvantaged Youth, Educational Change, Educational Experience, Elementary Secondary Education, Heterogeneous Grouping, Small Group Instruction, Thinking Skills, Track System (Education), Vocational Education
ERIC Clearinghouse on Urban Education, Institute for Urban and Minority Education, Box 40, Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, NY 10027 (free).
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Urban Education, New York, NY.
Identifiers: ERIC Digests