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ERIC Number: ED549088
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 243
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2673-3810-5
Optimizing Group Learning: A Phenomenological Study Exploring the Experiences of Senior Business Students at a Major Research University
Yorra, Nancy
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Northeastern University
Group learning is widely considered throughout literature to be an effective method of learning; however, there is also evidence for the claim that there is often a significant gap between theory and practice. The current highly competitive climate in higher education, combined with skyrocketing tuitions and increasingly vocal accountability and consumerism movements, makes this an ideal time for colleges and universities to examine how their students perceive group learning activities and take steps to reduce or eliminate this gap. This phenomenological study conducted in-depth one-on-one interviews with six senior undergraduate business students at a major research university in the northeast United States (referred to throughout as "Research University") to gain an understanding of how they perceived their group learning experiences. The two research questions guiding this study were: 1) What group learning experiences have proven effective in meeting the learning needs of each member of the group? and 2) What factors either enhance or diminish the overall utility for each individual member of the group? Attentively listening to the respondents and employing three underpinning components of phenomenological inquiry 1) bracketing 2) horizonalization and 3) iterative analysis, allowed this researcher to go beyond just identifying factors that enhanced or diminished the overall utility for each individual member of the group and discern an all-encompassing commonality, or the essence of group learning experiences. Although the students acknowledged several benefits of group learning, they were significantly more vocal regarding the aspects that negatively affected them. The degree to which the students expressed a fear of the unpredictable that arises from group work was the most prevalent finding of this study. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A