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COLLABORATIVEVERSUSCOOPERATIVELEARNING­ACOMPARISONOFTHE

TWOCONCEPTSWHICHWILLHELPUSUNDERSTANDTHEUNDERLYING

NATUREOFINTERACTIVELEARNING

ByTedPanitz

IhavebeensearchingformanyyearsfortheHolyGrailofinteractivelearning,adistinctionbetween

collaborativeandcooperativelearningdefinitions.Iamgettingclosertomyelusivegoalallthetime.Ibelieve

confusionariseswhenpeoplelookatprocessesassociatedwitheachconceptandseeacertainamountofoverlap

orinter­conceptusage.Iwillclarifythedefinitionsofcollaborativeandcooperativelearningfirstbypresenting

mydefinitionsofthetwotermsandreviewingthoseofotherauthorswhohavehelpedclarifymythinkingand

secondbypresentingandanalyzingtheeducationalbenefitsofcollaborative/cooperativelearningtechniques.

Theunderlyingpremiseforcollaborativeandcooperativelearningisfoundedinconstructivistepistemology.

Johnson,Johnson&Smith(1991)havesummarizedtheseprinciplesintheirdefinitionofanewparadigmof

teaching."First,knowledgeisconstructed,discovered,andtransformedbystudents.Facultycreatethe conditionswithinwhichstudentscanconstructmeaningfromthematerialstudiedbyprocessingitthrough existingcognitivestructuresandthenretainingitinlong­termmemorywhereitremainsopentofurther processingandpossiblereconstruction.Second,studentsactivelyconstructtheirownknowledge.Learningis conceivedofassomethingalearnerdoes,notsomethingthatisdonetothelearner.Studentsdonotpassively acceptknowledgefromtheteacherorcurriculum.Studentsactivatetheirexistingcognitivestructuresor constructnewonestosubsumethenewinput.Third,facultyeffortisaimedatdevelopingstudents' competenciesandtalents.Fourth,educationisapersonaltransactionamongstudentsandbetweenthefaculty andstudentsastheyworktogether.Fifth,alloftheabovecanonlytakeplacewithinacooperativecontext. Sixth,teachingisassumedtobeacomplexapplicationoftheoryandresearchthatrequiresconsiderableteacher

trainingandcontinuousrefinementofskillsandprocedures"(p1:6)

Thefollowingwillserveasastartingpointforthisdiscussion.Abasicdefinitionofthetermscollaborativeand

cooperative,reducedtotheirsimplestterms,ispresented:

Collaborationisaphilosophyofinteractionandpersonallifestylewhereindividualsareresponsiblefortheir

actions,includinglearningandrespecttheabilitiesandcontributionsoftheirpeers;

Cooperationisastructureofinteractiondesignedtofacilitatetheaccomplishmentofaspecificendproductor

goalthroughpeopleworkingtogetheringroups.

Beforeweproceedwiththetheoreticalunderpinningofeachmethoditwouldbehelpfultodescribethe

differencesbetween

thetwoparadigmsintermsofanactualclass.

Inthecooperativemodeltheteachermaintainscompletecontroloftheclass,eventhoughthestudentswork ingroupstoaccomplishagoalofacourse.Thecooperativeteacherasksaspecificquestionsuchas,“Whatwere thefivecausesofthestartof WorldWarII?” Theteacherprovidesadditionalarticlesforthestudentstoread andanalyze,beyondthetext,andthenasksthestudentstoworkingroupstoanswerthequestion.Thegroups thenpresenttheirresultstothewholeclassanddiscusstheirreasoning.Afollowupquestionmaythenbeposed tothegroupstoanalyzetheUnitedNationstodetermineifthishasbeenaneffectiveorganizationtoprevent worldwarsandtomakerecommendationsonpossiblechangesneededtomaketheUNmoreeffective.The teachermightusespecificstructures,suchasaJigSawmodel,tohelpfacilitatethegroupinteractions.He/she mightrequireaspecificproductsuchasatermpaperorreport,classpresentations,andanexamattheendofthe topic.Thestudentsdotheworknecessarytoconsiderthematerialbeingcoveredbuttheteachermaintains controloftheprocessateachstage.

Inthecollaborativemodelgroupswouldassumealmosttotalresponsibilityforansweringthequestion.The

studentsdetermineiftheyhadenoughinformationtoanswerthequestion.Ifnottheyidentifyothersources,

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suchasjournals,books,videos,theinternet,tonameafew.Theworkofobtainingtheextrasourcematerial wouldbedistributedamongthegroupmembersbythegroupmembers.Thegroupwoulddecidehowmany reasonstheycouldidentify.Thecollaborativeteacherwouldnotspecifyanumber,butwouldassesstheprogress ofeachgroupandprovidesuggestionsabouteachgroup’sapproachandthedatagenerated.Itmightalsooccur tothestudentstolistthereasonsinorderofpriority.Theteacherwouldbeavailableforconsultationsandwould facilitatetheprocessbyaskingforfrequentprogressreportsfromthegroups,facilitategroupdiscussionsabout groupdynamics,helpwithconflictresolution,etc.Thefinalproductisdeterminedbyeachgroup,after consultationwiththeteacher.Themeansofassessmentofthegroup’sperformancewouldalsobenegotiatedby eachgroupwiththeteacher.SomegroupsmightdecidetoanalyzetheUN,asthecooperativegroupwas directedtodo,ortheymighttrytocomeupwithacompletelyneworganization.Theymightgobackthrough historytodeterminehowotherperiodsofpeacewerecreated.Theprocessisveryopenendedwhileitmaintains afocusontheoverallgoal.Thestudentsdevelopaverystrongownershipfortheprocessandrespondvery positivelytothefactthattheyaregivenalmostcompleteresponsibilitytodealwiththeproblemposedtothem andtheyhavesignificant inputintotheirassessment.

Theunderlyingpremiseforbothcollaborativeandcooperativelearningisfoundedinconstructivisttheory. Knowledgeisdiscoveredbystudentsandtransformedintoconceptsstudentscanrelateto.Itisthen reconstructedandexpandedthroughnewlearningexperiences.Learningconsistsofactiveparticipationbythe studentversuspassiveacceptanceofinformation presentedbyanexpertlecturer.Learningcomesaboutthrough transactionsanddialogueamongstudentsandbetweenfacultyandstudents,inasocialsetting.Studentslearnto understandandappreciatedifferentperspectivesthroughadialoguewiththeirpeers.Adialoguewiththe teacher helpsstudentslearnthevocabularyandsocialstructureswhichgovernthegroupsstudentswishtojoin, suchashistorian,mathematician,writer,actor,etc.

KenBruffee(1995)identifiestwocausesforthedifferencesbetweenthetwoapproaches.Hestates:"First,

collaborativeandcooperativelearningweredevelopedoriginallyforeducatingpeopleofdifferentages, experienceandlevelsofmasteryofthecraftofinterdependence.Second,whenusingonemethodortheother

method,teacherstendtomakedifferentassumptionsaboutthenatureandauthorityofknowledge."(p12)These

differentassumptionswillbeexploredthroughoutthepaper.Theageoreducationlevelsasadistinctionhave

becomeblurredovertimeaspractitionersatalllevelsmixthetwoapproaches.However,whatdetermineswhich

approachisuseddoesdependuponthesophisticationlevelofthestudentsinvolved,withcollaborativerequiring

moreadvancedstudentpreparationworkingingroups.Otherdeterminingfactorsarethephilosophyand

preparationoftheteacher.

Brufeeseeseducationasareacculturationprocessthroughconstructiveconversation.Studentslearnaboutthe cultureofthesocietytheywishtojoinbydevelopingtheappropriatevocabularyofthatsocietyandby exploringthatsociety'scultureandnorms(i.e.thatofmathematician,historian,journalist,etc.).Brufee identifiestwotypesofknowledgeasabasisforchoosinganapproach.Foundationalknowledgeisthebasic knowledgerepresentedbysociallyjustifiedbeliefsweallagreeon.Correctspellingandgrammar,mathematics procedures,historyfacts,aknowledgeofthecontentsoftheconstitution,etc.,wouldrepresenttypesof foundationalknowledge.Brufeecontendsthatthesearebestlearnedusingcooperativelearningstructuresinthe earlygrades.Hestates:"Themainpurposeofprimaryschooleducationistohelpchildrenrenegotiatetheir membershipinthelocalcultureoffamilylifeandhelpthemjoinsomeoftheestablishedknowledge communitiesavailabletothemandencompassingthecultureweholdincommon.Animportantpurposeof collegeoruniversityeducationistohelpadolescentsandadultsjoinsomemoreoftheestablishedknowledge communitiesavailabletothem.Butanother,andperhapsmoreimportantpirposeofcollegeoruniversity educationistohelpstudentsrenogotiatetheirmembershipintheencompassingcommonculturethatuntilthen

hascircumscribedtheirlives."(p15)

Brufeedefinesnonfoundationalknowledgeasthatwhichisderivedthroughreasoningandquestioningversus rotememory.Hewrites:"Itismorelikelytoaddressquestionswithdubiousorambiguousanswers,answersthat requirewell­developedjudgmenttoarriveat,judgmentthatlearningtoanswersuchaquestiontends,inturn,to

devlop."(p15)Theotherwayinwhichnonfoundationaleducationdiffersfromfoundationalisthatitencourages

studentsnottotaketheirteacher'sauthorityforgranted.Studentsshoulddoubtanswersandmethodsforarriving

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atanswersprovidedbytheirprofessors,andperhapsmoreimportantlytheyneedtobehelpedtocometoterms

withtheirdoubtsbyparticipatingactivelyinthelearningandinquiryprocess.Outofthisprocessknew

knowledgeisoftencreated,somethingnotlikelytooccurwhendealingwiththefactsandinformation

associatedwithfoundationalknowledge.Collaborativelearningshiftstheresponsibilityforlearningawayfrom

theteacherasexperttothestudent,andperhapsteacher,aslearner.Brufeeseesthetwoapproachesassomewhat

linearwithcollaborativelearningbeingdesignedtopickupwherecooperativelearningleavesoff.Ineffect,

studentslearnbasicinformationandprocessesforinteractingsociallyintheprimarygradesandthenextend

theircriticalthinkingandreasoningskillsandunderstandingofsocialinteractionsastheybecomemore

involvedandtakecontrolofthelearningprocessthroughcollaborativeactivities.Thiswriterbelievesthatthe

transitionisbetterviewedasacontinuimfromacloselycontrolled,teacher­centeredsystemtoastudent­

centeredsystemwheretheteacherandstudentsshareauthorityandcontroloflearning.

Collaborativelearning(CL)isapersonalphilosophy,notjustaclassroomtechnique.Inallsituationswhere

peoplecometogetheringroups,itsuggestsawayofdealingwithpeoplewhichrespectsandhighlights

individualgroupmembers'abilitiesandcontributions.Thereisasharingofauthorityandacceptanceof

responsibilityamonggroupmembersforthegroupsactions.Theunderlyingpremiseofcollaborativelearningis

baseduponconsensusbuildingthroughcooperationbygroupmembers,incontrasttocompetitioninwhich

individualsbestothergroupmembers.CLpractitionersapplythisphilosophyintheclassroom,atcommittee

meetings,withcommunitygroups,withintheirfamiliesandgenerallyasawayoflivingwithanddealingwith

otherpeople.

Cooperativelearningisdefinedbyasetofprocesseswhichhelppeopleinteracttogetherinordertoaccomplish

aspecificgoalordevelopanendproductwhichisusuallycontentspecific.Itismoredirectivethana

collaborativesystemofgovernanceandcloselycontrolledbytheteacher.Whiletherearemanymechanismsfor

groupanalysisandintrospectionthefundamentalapproachisteachercenteredwhereascollaborativelearningis

morestudentcentered.

SpencerKagan(1989)providesanexcellentdefinitionofcooperativelearningbylookingatgeneralstructures

whichcanbeappliedtoanysituation.Hisdefinitionprovidesanumbrellafortheworkcooperativelearning

specialistsincludingtheJohnsons,Slavin,Cooper,GravesandGraves,Millis,etc.Itfollows:"Thestructural

approachtocooperativelearningisbasedonthecreation,analysisandsystematicapplicationofstructures,or

content­freewaysoforganizingsocialinteractionintheclassroom.Structuresusuallyinvolveaseriesofsteps,

withproscribedbehaviorateachstep.Animportantcornerstoneoftheapproachisthedistinctionbetween

"structures"and"activities".Toillustrate,teacherscandesignmanyexcellentcooperativeactivities,suchas

makingateammuraloraquilt.Suchactivitiesalmostalwayshaveaspecificcontent­boundobjectiveandthus

cannotbeusedtodeliverarangeofacademiccontent.Structuresmaybeusedrepeatedlywithalmostany

subjectmatter,atawiderangeofgradelevelsandatvariouspointsinalessonplan."

JohnMyerspointsoutthatthedictionarydefinitionsof"collaboration",derivedfromitsLatinroot,focusonthe processofworkingtogether;therootwordfor"cooperation"stressestheproductofsuchwork.Co­operative learninghaslargelyAmericanrootsfromthephilosophicalwritingsofJohnDeweystressingthesocialnatureof learningandtheworkongroupdynamicsbyKurtLewin.CollaborativelearninghasBritishroots,basedonthe workofEnglishteachersexploringwaystohelpstudentsrespondtoliteraturebytakingamoreactiverolein theirownlearning.Thecooperativelearningtraditiontendstousequantitativemethodswhichlookat achievement:i.e.,theproductoflearning.Thecollaborativetraditiontakesamorequalitativeapproach, analyzingstudenttalkinresponsetoapieceofliteratureoraprimarysourceinhistory.Myerspointsoutsome differencesbetweenthetwoconcepts:"Supportersofco­operativelearningtendtobemoreteacher­centered,for examplewhenformingheterogeneousgroups,structuringpositiveinter­dependence,andteachingco­operative skills.Collaborativelearningadvocatesdistruststructureandallowstudentsmoresayifformingfriendshipand interestgroups.Studenttalkisstressedasameansforworkingthingsout.Discoveryandcontextualapproaches areusedtoteachinterpersonalskills.Suchdifferencescanleadtodisagreements Icontendthedisputeisnot aboutresearch,butmoreaboutthemoralityofwhatshouldhappenintheschools.Beliefsastowhatshould happenintheschoolscanbeviewedasacontinuumoforientationstowardcurriculumfrom"transmission"to "transaction"to"transmission".Atoneendisthetransmissionposition.Asthenamesuggests,theaimofthis

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orientationistotransmitknowledgetostudentsintheformoffacts,skillsandvalues.Thetransformation

positionattheotherendofthecontinuumstressespersonalandsocialchangeinwhichthepersonissaidtobe

interrelatedwiththeenvironmentratherthanhavingcontroloverit.Theaimofthisorientationisself­

actualization,personalororganizationalchange."

RockyRockwooddescribesthedifferencesbyacknowledgingtheparallelstheybothhaveinthattheybothuse

groups,bothassignspecifictasks,andbothhavethegroupsshareandcomparetheirproceduresandconclusions

inplenaryclasssessions.Themajordifferenceliesinthefactthatcooperativedealsexclusivelywithtraditional

(canonical)knowledgewhilecollaborativetiesintothesocialconstructivistmovement,assertingthatboth

knowledgeandauthorityofknowledgehavechangeddramaticallyinthelastcentury.Rockwoodstates:"Inthe

idealcollaborativeenvironment,theauthorityfortestinganddeterminingtheappropriatenessofthegroup

productrestswith,first,thesmallgroup,second,theplenarygroup(thewholeclass)andfinally(butalways

understoodtobesubjecttochallengeandrevision)therequisiteknowledgecommunity(i.e.thediscipline:

geography,history,biologyetc.)Theconceptofnon­foundationalknowledgechallengesnotonlytheproduct acquired,butalsotheprocessemployedintheacquisitionoffoundationalknowledge.Mostimportantly,in cooperative,theauthorityremainswiththeinstructor,whoretainsownershipofthetask,whichinvolveseithera closedoraclosable(thatistosayfoundational)problem(theinstructorknowsorcanpredicttheanswer).In collaborative,theinstructor­­oncethetaskisset­­transfersallauthoritytothegroup.Intheideal,thegroup's taskisalwaysopenended.Seenfromthisperspective,cooperativedoesnotempowerstudents.Itemploysthem toservetheinstructor'sendsandproducesa"right"oracceptableanswer.Collaborativedoestrulyempowerand bravesalltherisksofempowerment(forexample,havingthegrouporclassagreetoanembarrassingly simplisticorunconvincingpositionorproduceasolutioninconflictwiththeinstructor's).Everyperson,Brufee

(1995)holds,belongstoseveral"interpretativeorknowledgecommunities"thatsharevocabularies,pointsof

view,histories,values,conventionsandinterests.Thejoboftheinstructoristohelpstudentslearntonegotiate

theboundariesbetweenthecommunitiestheyalreadybelongtoandthecommunityrepresentedbytheteacher's

academicdiscipline,whichthestudentswanttojoin.Everyknowledgecommunityhasacoreoffoundational

knowledgethatitsmembersconsiderasgiven(butnotnecessarilyabsolute).Tofunctionindependentlywithina

knowledgecommunity,thefledglingscholarmustmasterenoughmaterialtobecomeconversantwiththe

community."Rockwoodconcludes:"Inmyteachingexperience,cooperativerepresentsthebestmeansto

approachmasteryoffoundationalknowledge.Oncestudentsbecomereasonablyconversant,theyarereadyfor

collaborative,readytodiscussandassess,

"

Myerssuggestsuseofthe"transaction"orientationasacompromisebetweentakinghardpositionsadvocating

eithermethodology."Thisorientationviewseducationasadialoguebetweenthestudentandthecurriculum.

Studentsareviewedasproblemsolvers.Problemsolvingandinquiryapproachesstressingcognitiveskillsand

theideasofVygotsky,Piaget,KohlbergandBrunerarelinkedtotransaction.Thisperspectiveviewsteachingas

a"conversation"inwhichteachersandstudentslearntogetherthroughaprocessofnegotiationwiththe

curriculumtodevelopasharedviewoftheworld."

BrodyandDavidson(1998)lookatthedifferencesbetweenthetwoparadigmsepistomologicly.Inthe

early1970ssomeeducatorswereformulatingmethodsbaseduponstudiesofhumansocialinteractionandgroup

learning.Thesestudiesleadtocooperativelearningstrategiesbaseduponsocialinterdependencetheory,

cognitive­developmentaltheoryandthebehaviorallearningtheory.Anothergroupofeducatorsbasedtheir

frameworkforgroupworkontheoriesderivedfromstudiesaboutthesocialnatureofhumanknowledge.The

differentrootsofconstructivismformedthebasisofcollaborativelearning.

Johnson,Johnson,andSmith(1998)clarifythedifferencesbetweenthecooperativelearningstrategies."Social

interdependencetheoryassumesthatcooperativeeffortsarebasedonintrinsicmotivationgeneratedby interpersonalfactorsandajointaspirationtoachieveasignificantgoal.Behaviorallearningtheoryassumesthat cooperativeeffortsarepoweredbyextrinsicmotivationtoachieverewards.Socialinterdependencetheory focusesonrelationalconceptsdealingwithwhathappensamongindividuals(forexamplecooperationis somethingthatexistsonlyamongindividualsnotwithinthem),whereasthecognitive­developmentperspective focusesonwhathappenswithinasingleperson(forexample,thedisequilibrium,cognitivereorganization).The

differencesacrossthesetheoreticalassumptionshaveyettobefullyexploredorsolved."(p29)

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BrodyandDavidson(1998)identifyaseriesofquestionsforteachingandlearningintheclassroomwhichhelp

distinguishbetweentheapproaches.(p8)

"Questionsteachersaskfromthecooperativelearningperspective

1.Howdoweteachsocialskills?

2.Howcanwedevelopself­esteem,responsibility,andrespectforothers?

3.Howdoessocialstatuseffectlearninginsmallgroups?

4.Howdoyoupromoteproblemsolvingandmanageconflict?

5.Areextrinsicorintrinsicrewardsmoreeffective?

6.Howcanweprovethatcooperativelearningincreasesacademicachievement?

7.Howdoweteachchildrentotakeonvariousroles?

8.Howdowestructurecooperativeactivities?

Questionsteachersaskfromacollaborativeperspective

1.Whatisthepurposeoftheactivity?

2.Whatistheimportanceoftalkinlearning?

3.Towhatextantisgettingofftopicavaluablelearningexperience?

4.Howcanweempowerchildrentobecomeautonomouslearners?

5.Whatisthedifferencebetweenusinglanguagetolearnandlearningtouselanguage?

6.Howcanwenegotiaterelevantlearningexperienceswithchildren?

7.Howdoweinteractwithstudentsinsuchawaythatweaskonlyrealquestionsratherthanthoseforwhichwe

alreadyknowtheanswers?

8.Howcanweuseourawarenessofthesocialnatureoflearningtocreateeffectivesmallgrouplearning

environments?"

Johnson,Johnson&Holubec(1991)haveestablishedadefinitionofcooperativelearningwhichidentifiesfive

basicelementsnecessaryforaproceduretobeconsideredcooperative.Theyalsodefinestructuresand

evaluationprocedureswithinwhichanycontentmaybetaught,ratherthandefiningproceduresbasedupon

specificcurriculum.Theyhavedevelopedanextensivesetofworksheetsforteachersandstudentstousein

establishingthefiveelements.TheJohnson'sfiveitemsareasfollows.

"PositiveInterdependence­Studentsperceivethat

theyneedeachothertocompletethegroup'stask

("sinkorswimtogether").Teachersmaystructure

positiveinterdependencebyestablishingmutual

goals(learnandmakesureallothergroupmembers

learn),jointrewards(ifallgroupmembersachieve

abovecriteria,eachwillreceivebonuspoints),

sharedresources(onepaperforeachgrouporeach

memberreceivespartoftheinformation),and

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assignedroles(summarizer,encouragerof

participation,recorder,timekeeperetc.).

Face­to­FacePromotiveInteraction­Students

promoteeachother'slearningbyhelping,sharing,

andencouragingeffortstolearn.Studentsexplain,

discuss,andteachwhattheyknowtoclassmates.

Teachersstructurethegroupssothatstudentssit

kneetokneeandtalkthrougheachaspectofthe

assignment.

IndividualAccountability­Eachstudent'sperformance

isfrequentlyassessedandtheresultsaregiventothe

groupandtheindividual.Teachersmaystructure

individualaccountabilitybygivinganindividualtest

toeachstudentorrandomlyselectingonemember

ofthegrouptogivetheanswer.

InterpersonalAndSmallgroupSkills­Groupscannot

functioneffectivelyifstudentsdonothaveandusethe

neededsocialskills.Teachersteachtheseskillsas

purposefullyandpreciselyasacademicskills.Collaborative

skillsincludeleadership,decisionmaking,trustbuilding,

communication,andconflict­managementskills.

GroupProcessing­Groupsneedspecifictimetodiscuss howwelltheyareachievingtheirgoalsandmaintaining effectiveworkingrelationshipsamongmembers.Teachers structuregroupprocessingbyassigningsuchtasksas (a)listatleastthreememberactionswhichhelpedthegroup besuccessfuland(b)listoneactionthatcouldbeaddedto makethegroupmoresuccessfultomorrow.Teachersalso monitorthegroupsandgivefeedbackonhowwellthe

groupsareworkingtogetherandtheclassasawhole.(p1:33)

TheNationalCouncilofTeachersofMath(NCTM)hasasimilardefinitionaspresentedbyAliceArtztand

ClaireNewman(1990)intheirbook"Howtousecooperativelearninginamathclass."Cooperativelearning

involvesasmallgroupoflearners,whoworktogetherasateamtosolveaproblem,completeatask,or

accomplishacommongoal.Therearemanydifferentcooperativelearningtechniques;however,allofthem

havecertainelementsincommon.Theseelementsaretheingredientsnecessarytoinsurethatwhenstudentsdo

workingroups,theyworkcooperatively.First,themembersofagroupmuctperceivethattheyarepartofa

teamandthattheyallhaveacommongoal.Second,groupmembersmustrealizethattheproblemtheyareto

solveisagroupproblemandthatthesuccessorfailureofthegroupwillbesharedbyallmembersofthegroup.

Third,toaccomplishthegroup'sgoal,allstudentsmusttalkwithoneanother­toengageindiscussionofall

problems.Finally,itmustbecleartoallthateachmember'sindividualworkhasadirecteffectonthegroup's

success.Teamworkisofutmostimportance."

Manyoftheelementsofcooperativelearningmaybeusedincollaborativesituations.Forexamplestudents workinpairstogetherinaThink­Pair­Shareprocedure,wherestudentsconsideraquestionindividually,discuss theirideaswithanotherstudenttoformaconsensusanswer,andthensharetheirresultswiththeentireclass. Theuseofpairscanbeintroducedatanytimeduringaclasstoaddressquestionsorsolveproblemsortocreate

varietyinaclasspresentation.TheJigSawmethod(Aronson1978)isagoodexample.Studentsbecome

"experts"onaconceptandareresponsibleforteachingittotheothergroupmembers.Groupssubdivideatopic

andmembersworktogetherwiththosefromothergroupswhohavethesametopic.Theythenreturntotheir

originalgroupsandexplaintheirtopic.SlavindevelopedtheSTADmethod(StudentTeams­Achievement­

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Divisions)wheretheteacherpresentsalesson,andthenthestudentsmeetinteamsoffourorfivemembersto

completeasetofworksheetsonthelesson.Eachstudentthentakesaquizonthematerial,andthescoresthe

studentscontributetotheirteamsarebeaseduponthedegreetowhichtheyhaveimprovedtheirindividualpast

averages.Thehighestscoringteamsarerecognizedinaweeklyclassnewsletter.Inanothermethoddeveloped

bySlavin­TGT(Teams­Games­Tournaments)insteadoftakingquizzesthestudentsplayacademicgamesas

representativesoftheirteams.Theycompetewithstudentshavingsimilarachievementlevelsandcoacheach

otherpriortothegamestoinsureallgroupmembersarecompetentinthesubjectmatter.Otherstructures

include:Co­op,Co­op(Kagan),CIRC­CooperativeIntegratedReadingandComparison(Madden,Slavin,

Stevens),GroupInvestigation(Sharan,Aharan),IssuesControversy,LearningTogether(Johnson,Johnson),

JigsawII(Slavin),TAI­TeamAssistedIndividualization(Slavin,Leavy,Madden),StructuredControversy

(Johnson,Johnson).

OPTIONSINCOOPERATIVELEARNING(Lee1997)

Therearemanywaysthatcooperativelearningcanbeimplemented.Aneducator'sphilosophyplaysakeyrole

indetermininghowcooperativelearningisused.Thetablebelowdisplaysanumberofissuesineducation.

Followingthetable,implicationsofvariouschoicesarediscussed.Pleasebearinmindthatthechoicesinthe

tablearenoteither­orchoices.Instead,theyrepresentcontinua,andtheviewsofeducatorslieatmanydifferent

pointsalongthesecontinua.Further,agiveneducator'sviewsareaffectedbythestudentsthearecurrently

teaching.

1.student­centered­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­teacher­centered

2.intrinsicmotivation­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­extrinsicmotivation

3.knowledgeconstruction­­­­­­­­­­­­­knowledgetransmission

4.loose,trustingstudentstodo­­­­­­­­­­­structured,

itrightsocialengineering

Issue1.Studentcentered­­Teacher­centered

Theissuehereistheroleofstudentsinshapingtheclassroom.Student­centered,alsocalledlearner­centered,

meansthatstudentsprovideinputintowhattheclassdoesandhowitdoesit.Thisincludesdecisionsaboutwhat

tostudy,howtostudyit(e.g.,byreading,fieldtrips,discussion,lecture),choiceofgroupmates,howoftento

usegroups,whichgroupactivitiestodo,howassessmentisconducted,andwhatrewardsandpunishments­if

any­aregiven.

Inateacher­centeredsituationtheabovedecisionsaremadeexclusivelybytheteacher.Teachersarethebosses,

leaders,andcreators,whilestudentsaretheemployees,followers,andusers.Thewhatandhowoflearningare

preplannedbytheteacher.Whenstudentsareingroups,theyarestudyingmaterialchosenbytheteacher.The

teacherdecideswhoisinwhichgroup,givesgroupstimelimitsforfinishingtheirtasks,anddoesallthe

assessment.

Issue2.Intrinsicmotivation­ExtrinsicmotivationTheissuehereishowstudentsbecomemotivatedtolearn

andcooperate.Intrinsicmotivationcomesfromwithinstudents.Forexample,theywanttolearnforthejoyof

learning,becausetheyareveryinterestedinthetopic,ortoimprovethemselves.Helpingotherstudentsflows

fromthedesiretobealtruisticandtheenjoymentofcollectiveeffort.Studentslearntogetherwithouttheuseof

grades,teamawardcertificates,andotherrewardsorpunishmentstoencouragethem.

Ontheotherhand,extrinsicmotivationcomesfromoutsidethestudents.Forexample,theylearninorderto

receivepraise,gradesorotherrewardsfromteachers,parents,classmates,andothers.Theymaynothelpone

anotherlearniftherearenooutsideincentives.Whenrewardsorthreatsofpunishmentarenotthere,students

maybelesseagertolearnandtohelponeanother.

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Issue3.Knowledgeconstruction­Knowledgetransmission

Thisissueinvolvestheprocessbywhichstudentslearn.Knowledgeconstruction,aconceptfromcognitive

psychology,istheideathatlearnersconstructtheirownnetworksofknowledgebyconnectingnewinformation

withtheirpastknowledgeandinterests.Eachpersonisdifferent;weeachwillcomeawayfromthesamelesson

withdifferentconstructionsoftheideaspresented.Teacherscanfacilitatethisconstructionwork,butthekeyis

whathappensineachindividual'smind.Theuseofopen­endedquestionsisconsistentwithknowledge

construction.Inthisview,collaborativeinteractioningroupsprovidesstudentswithmanyopportunitiestobuild

andtryouttheirdevelopingknowledge.

Knowledgetransmission,aconceptfrombehavioristpsychology,seesknowledgeflowingdirectlyfromthe

teachertothestudent,justliketheteacherispouringknowledgeintothestudents'heads.Whattheteacher

teachesshouldgointoeachlearner'sheadwithoutbeingfilteredbywhatisalreadythere.Close­endedquestions

tendtopredominateinthistypeofinstruction.Themainroleofgroupsfromthisperspectiveistomakesure

groupmembersmasterthematerialtransmittedbytheteacher.

Issue4.Loose­­Structured

Thisissuereferstotheextentwhichteachersbelievegroupsofstudentswillworktogetherwellwithoutteacher

intervention.Teachersmaystartbyusingmorestructureandasstudentsbecomefamiliarwiththegroupprocess

andproficientatworkingtogethertheyeventually,maybelooseraboutstructuringgroupactivitiesandteaching

collaborativeskillsinordertoencourageeffectivegroupinteraction.Ontheotherhand,otherteachersfeelthat

theyneedtobelikesocialengineers,structuringgroupinteraction,orelsestudentswillnotreapthebenefitsof

workingtogether.Theissuesdiscussedabovearealsoheardwhensomepeoplecontrasttheterms"collaborative

learning"and"cooperativelearning".Atthesametime,itshouldbepointedoutthatothereducatorsusethetwo

termsinterchangeably.

CollaborativeLearning(Orr1997)

Frequently,whenstudentsorteachershearthephrasecollaborativelearning,theyautomaticallyassumeawork

groupcontext,harkenbacktotheirownunpleasantexperienceswithworkorstudygroups,anddismissthe

notionofcollaborationasanunworkableapproachthatattemptstotransfertheburdenofteachingfromteacher

tostudent.Suchanxietyisworthnotingbecauseitrepresentsanacutemisunderstandingofwhathasbecomea

mostviableapproachtoteachingandlearning.

Collaborativelearningisbaseduponthefollowingprinciples:

1.Workingtogetherresultsinagreaterunderstandingthanwouldlikelyhaveoccurredifonehadworked

independently.

2.Spokenandwritteninteractionscontributetothisincreasedunderstanding.

3.Opportunityexiststobecomeaware,throughclassroomexperiences,ofrelationshipsbetweensocial

interactionsandincreasedunderstanding.

4.Someelementsofthisincreasedunderstandingareidiosyncraticandunpredictable.

5.Participationisvoluntaryandmustbefreelyenteredinto.

CooperativeLearningisverysimilarexceptthatitintroducesamorestructuredsettingwiththeteacherintotal

controlofthelearningenvironment.Interactivelearningreliesontheapplicationofcomputertechnologyasthe

collaborativemediumbetweenstudentandteacher.Butallthreelearningapproachesrecognizethatlearningis

indeedatwo­waystreetwithteachingandlearningbeingtwocomponentsofthesameeducationalsystem.The

approachesdivergeintheamountoffreedomallowedtheparticipants;collaborativelearningstrategiesarethe

mostopen.

10/27/2016

coop/collabdefinition

Inmyclasses,Iviewstudent­teacherandstudent­studentcollaborationasessentialtosuccessfullearning.Thus,

Iwillseekeveryopportunitytoencouragecollaborativeexperiences.Thisdoesnotimplythattherewillbeno

traditionallectureformats.Somelecturingisnecessaryeithertoclarifycomplexinformationalideasorto

presentmaterialnotreadilyavailable.Butstudentswillexperienceavarietyofinstructionalmethodsandthey

willbeactivelyinvolvedinthelearningexperience

REFERENCES

Artzt,A.F.,Newman,C.M.,(1990)HowToUseCooperativelearningintheMathematicsClass,National

CouncilofTeachersofmathematics:Reston,VA

Brody,C.M.,(1995),"Collaborationorcooperativelearning?Complimentarypracticesforinstructionalreform",

TheJournalofStaff,Program&OrganizationalDevelopmentv12,n3,Winter1995,p133­143

Brody,C.M.,&Davidson,N.,(1998),"Introduction:ProfessionaldevelopmentandCooperativelearning"in

BrodyandDavidson(Eds.),ProfessionalDevelopmentforCooperativeLearning­IssuesandApproaches,State

UniversityofNYPress;AlbanyNY

Bruffee,K.,(1995),"Sharingourtoys­Cooperativelearningversuscollaborativelearning".Change,Jan/Feb,

1995pp12­18

Johnson,D.W.,Johnson,R.T.,Holubec,E.J.,CooperationinTheClassroom,(1991),InteractionBookCo:

Edina,MN

Johnson,D.W.,Johnson,R.T.,Smith,K.A.,(1998),Change,July/Augustp27­35

,(1991),ActiveLearning:CooperationintheCollegeClassroom,InteractionBookCo.:Edina,MN

Kagan,S.,EducationalLeadership(Dec/Jan1989/1990)

Lee,G.S.,Internetcommunication,InstituteforDistanceEducation

UniversitiPertanianMalaysia

Myers,M,(1991),CooperativeLearningvol11#4,July

OrrR.,Internetcommunication,IUPUIProfessorofComputerTechnology

Rockwood,R.,NationalTeachingandLearningForumvol4#6,1995part1