2 results for Baker, Trish, Conference item, Shared Repository

  • Cooperative learning: theory into practice

    Baker, Trish (2009-12-23)

    Conference item
    Whitireia Community Polytechnic

    At the 2008 IASCE/IAIE conference in Turin, Trish Baker and Jill Clark presented a model for using assessed cooperative learning techniques with ethnically and linguistically diverse groups. The model consisted of four steps: training lecturers in cooperative learning techniques, training students in cooperative learning techniques, monitoring the groups' performance, and debriefing both lecturers and students. This research paper and presentation reports on a New Zealand tertiary business course that piloted the model with culturally diverse student groups. Results from this pilot study suggest that the thorough preparation and monitoring of diverse student groups by a lecturer trained in cooperative learning techniques led to superior academic achievement and greater student satisfaction for most groups. Successful groups were able to identify the skills they had acquired from the cooperative experience, particularly the transferable skills. Not all groups, however, derived the full benefit from the use of the model. Issues of individual motivation, openness to feedback,and a lack of generic skills contributed to the comparatively poor performance of one of the groups. The results of this research project suggest that the challenges of implementing cooperative learning groups wih culturally and linguistically diverse groups may be met by ensuring that both lecturers and students follow the guidelines outlined in the model. This paper recommends further trialing of the model with a larger sample.

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  • Cooperative learning: a double edged sword

    Baker, Trish (2009-12-23)

    Conference item
    Whitireia Community Polytechnic

    Although there has been very little research done in co-operative learning in New Zealand, international research is positive about the educational benefits of working in culturally diverse groups. This paper presents the findings of a research project examining New Zealand experiences with co-operative learning in multicultural groups. The paper presents findings from surveys and focus groups with both domestic and international students and with New Zealand tertiary lecturers who use collaborative learning techniques in their programmes. The findings from this research indicate that there is a strong cultural conflict in the conceptualisation of cooperative learning between international students with little prior experience of cooperative learning and New Zealand lecturers who are often not fully prepared to help international students to bridge the gaps. The majority of international students value lecturers' programme content delivery and the achievement of high marks over the development of interpersonal skills; this is contrary to New Zealand lecturers' belief that the development of team skills is the most important outcome from cooperative learning. This cognitive dissonance reinforces the importance of understanding cultural differences and their impact on student patterns of classroom behaviour. This paper recommends that domestic and international students be prepared more effectively for cooperative learning and that lecturers be trained in designing curricula and assessment programmes that are pedagogically sound and culturally accommodating. The paper proposes a model to assist lecturers to achieve this aim.

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