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What and Why

What is and Why use Cooperative Learning

A. What is Cooperative Learning?

  1. Formal Cooperative Groups - groups that last from one class period to several weeks.
  2. Informal Cooperative Groups - groups are ad-hoc groups that lost from a few minutes to one class period.
  3. Base Groups - long-term groups (lasting for the entire semester) that are heterogeneous with stable membership whose primary purpose is for members to give each other support, help, encouragement, and assistance with long-term, committed relationships.

B. Why should teachers utilize cooperative learning?

  1. Research indicates that cooperative learning results in a significantly higher achievement and retention than do competitive and individualistic learning.
  2. Research indicates that cooperative learning promotes a greater use of higher-  level reasoning strategies and crucial thinking than do competitive or individualist  efforts.
  3. In cooperative groups, members more frequently generate new ideas, strategies, and solutions that they would think of on their own.
  4. Research indicates that cooperative learning aids in the transfer of learning among subjects and disciplines.
  5. Cooperative learning results in more positive attitudes toward the subject area and greater continuing motivation to learn more about it. This positive attitude extends to the overall instructional experience.


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