Small Group Instruction in Higher Education: Lessons from the Past, Visions of the Future

Key Information

Small Group Instruction in Higher Education: Lessons from the Past, Visions of the Future, Edited By James L. Cooper, Pamela Robinson & David Ball

2003 [ISBN: 1-58107-067-5; 366 pages soft cover; 5 1/4 x 8 1/4 inch] $24.95


SGI1This text represents a compilation of work completed by Jim Cooper and his colleagues in the Network for Cooperative Learning in higher education over the last fifteen years. The Network and its newsletter, Cooperative Learning and College Teaching, were formed in 1990 with funding provided by a FIPSE grant to Jim. The first part of the text reprints 30 of the best articles in small-group learning in higher education from 1990-1999, articles first published in the newsletter that Jim and Pamela Robinson edited during that time. The articles chosen for this volume include work in research and theory written by Alexander Astin, Joseph Cuseo, Roberta Matthews, Neil Davidson and Barbara Millis. However, the focus of the selected reprints is on applications of active and group learning to college classrooms. Practitioners contributing articles to the volume include Susan Prescott Johnston, Alison King, Mel Silberman, David and Roger Johnson, Karl Smith, Ted Panitz, Barbara Millis and Shlomo Sharan.

Eight new chapters were written specifically for this text, including work by David and Roger Johnson, Spencer Kagan, Barbara Millis, and Jim Mitchell. Topics treated by these authors include small group instruction and brain research, how group work and service learning are natural allies, and how cooperative learning can impact a variety of college experiences, inside and outside of the classroom. Susan Johnston contributes a new chapter on clarity in developing group strategies. Jim Cooper, Pamela Robinson and David Ball offer a chapter in which leaders in higher education teaching and learning respond to survey items concerning the past, present and future of group learning in higher education. Thus, the volume presents a look at the history of small group instruction research, theory and practice and offers a glimpse at the future of this powerful instructional strategy.

The Contents

A Note from Jim Cooper
Organization of Book

Section 1. Group Learning: Definitions and Distinctions
>What is Cooperative Learning? Jim Cooper
>Building Bridges Between Cooperative and Collaborative Learning
Roberta S. Matthews, James L. Cooper, Neil Davidson, and Peter Hawkes
>Collaborative & Cooperative Learning in Higher Education: A Proposed Taxonomy Joe Cuseo

Section 2. Why Use Cooperative Strategies? Research and Theory
>FIPSE-Sponsored CL Research at Dominguez Hills and Community Colleges
Jim Cooper and Pamela Robinson
>Research on Cooperative Learning in College Science, Mathematics, Engineering, and Technology Leonard Springer
>How Cooperative Learning Can Fullfill the Promises of the “Seven Principles” Barbara Millis
>What Matters in College? Implications for CooperativeLearning of a New National Study Alexander W. Astin
>Critical Thinking and Cooperative Learning: A Natural Marriage
Joseph B. Cuseo
>Cooperative Learning: A Pedagogy for Diversity Joseph B. Cuseo
>Ten Reasons College Administrators Should Support Cooperative Learning
Jim Cooper

Section 3: Informal Small-group Procedures
>A Cooperative Learning Structure for LargeClasses: Think-Pair-Share
Barbara J. Millis and Philip G. Cottell Jr.
>Think-Pair-Square Applied to a Review Session Joy Ollen
>Guided Peer Questioning: A Cooperative Learning Approach to Critical Thinking
Alison King
>Quick-thinks: Active-thinking Tasks in Lecture Classes and Televised Instruction Susan Johnston and Jim Cooper
>Supporting Student Success Through Scaffolding
Susan Johnston and Jim Cooper
>The Use of Pairs in Cooperative Learning Mel Silberman

Section 4: Formal Cooperative-learning Strategies
>More Tips for Getting Started in Cooperative Learning (CL)
Susan Prescott-Johnston
>Getting Started with Cooperative Learning Susan Prescott-Johnston
>Using Small-Group Development to Facilitate Cooperative Learning Base Groups Nancy E. Stetson
>College Classrooms’ Lost Gold Mine: The Cooperative Base Group
Susan E. Gruber and Darlene Vanselow Habanek
>Structured Controversy/Constructive Controversy
David W. Johnson, Roger T. Johnson and Karl A. Smith
>Group Investigation in the University Classroom Shlomo Sharan

Section 5: Implementing Interactive Group Instruction: Practical Advice
>Faculty and Student Resistance to Cooperative Learning Ted Panitz
>Building Community One Brick at a Time Marcy Hamby Towns
>Group Formation in Cooperative Learning: What the Experts Say
Jim Cooper
>Trouble-Shooting Cooperative Learning Susan Prescott Johnston
>Trouble-Shooting Cooperative Learning Susan Prescott Johnston
>Trouble-Shooting Susan Prescott Johnston
>Peer Revision: Sharing the Power and the Work Susan Johnston
>Supporting Student Success in the Classroom Susan Johnston

Part II: What the Experts Are Thinking
>The 21st Century College: The Three Cs
>David W. Johnson and Roger T. Johnson
>Cooperative Learning and Service Learning: Soul-mates for Reflection in Higher Education James Mitchell
>Small-group Learning in Higher Education: A Status Report and an Agenda for the Future James L. Cooper, David Ball and Pamela Robinson
>Cooperative-learning Structures for Brain-compatible Instruction
Spencer Kagan
>Surveys and Cooperative Learning: Using Student Experiences as the Basis for Small-group Work Mark H. Maier
>Using Cooperative Games for Learning and Assessment Barbara J. Millis
>The Interactive Lecture: Reconciling Group and Active-learning Strategies with Traditional Instructional Formats  James L. Cooper, Pamela Robinson, and David Ball
>A Crisis of Clarity Susan Johnston

The Editors

James L. Cooper holds the Ph.D. from the University of Iowa in Educational Psychology, Statistics and Measurement. He has served as Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning at CSU Dominguez Hills and coordinated the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL)program at CSUDH as Faculty Associate in the Center.

Pamela Robinson holds the B.A. in Psychology from California State University, Dominguez Hills and the M.A. in Experimental Psychology from the California State University, Fullerton. She is a Lecturer in the School of Education at California State University, Dominguez Hills where she teaches courses in motivation and learning, research methods and multicultural issues in education.

David A. Ball (M.A., California State University, Dominguez Hills) worked with Dr. James Cooper as a research assistant, and statistics consultant. David received both his baccalaureate and master’s degrees from California State University, Dominguez Hills in psychology and behavioral sciences with a specialization in negotiation and conflict management.


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