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ERIC Number: EJ1088834
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0167-8329
Moving from Chance and "Chemistry" to Skills: Improving Online Student Learning Outcomes in Small Group Collaboration
Bernier, Anthony; Stenstrom, Cheryl
Education for Information, v32 n1 p55-69 2016
While instructors know the importance of successful small group collaboration, and the value of the skills required to execute them, students continue to prefer to work independently. The promise and development of recent online tools, however, and streams of recent research on small group collaboration, continue to produce less-than-satisfying or sufficiently generalizable pedagogical interventions. This study examines a more systematic attempt to direct students through specific tasks designed to improve their experience and produce higher quality student learning outcomes. Two groups of graduate students across four required online classes were surveyed about their attitudes and the steps they take when engaging assigned small group projects. The first group was offered a pre-recorded lecture as a resource while the second group was offered the same lecture plus additional specific ground rules to help avoid common negative experiences. Both groups were asked to complete surveys about their experiences. While many students continue to exhibit less-than-productive behaviors and practices, even after engaging the guidelines, some improvements did emerge. The study points out that more attention to pedagogical intervention is indicated if instructors hope to improve learning outcomes in valuable small group collaborations.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A