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Genomförda lärarseminarier


The Cooperative Learning Approach to Teaching

Professor Howard E Aldrich, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, USA

Om lärarseminariet
Som första seminarieledare har vi nöjet och äran att ha professor Howard Aldrich 16 september 2004. Han har under lång tid arbetat med så kallat aktivt lärande i sin undervisning. Under seminariet kommer tekniker för detta att presenteras och diskuteras. Så här beskriver Aldrich principerna för sin lärandeteknik:

The Cooperative Learning Approach to Teaching
(by Howard Aldrich, August 2004)

Here are the principles of cooperative learning, which include five basic elements.

1. Positive interdependence: For cooperative learning to succeed, students must feel that they need each other and cannot truly succeed unless everyone in the group succeeds. I try to avoid systems that make students compete against each other, e.g. I do not grade on a curve.

2. Face-to-face interaction that promotes learning: Students must promote one another's learning by explaining, discussing, and sharing what they know. They must confront and teach each other. Teaching is NOT instructor-talking, especially one-way talk. I discourage instructors from lecturing, unless absolutely necessary or part of a plan that leads into discussion. Occasional short lectures can be worked into an active-discussion format. But ”one-way” talk from a ”sage on the stage” diminishes students' roles in a class and makes them passive rather than active learners.

3. Individual accountability: Students must remain individually accountable. E.g., any member of a group must be ready to explain the group's answer to a problem. Even though I emphasize collective action, each student is still fully responsible for learning assignments. Students work in teams to prepare materials that they will jointly need to complete an assignment, but then are individually responsible for completing the final copy of the assignment.

4. Interpersonal and small group skills: Learning in and from groups depends on having and using a whole set of social skills, including leadership, decision-making, trust building, communication, and conflict-management skills. Students don't have these skills inherently, but they can be taught the skills at the same time that subject matter is being covered. These skills stand as a constant shadow curriculum within the process itself.

5. Group processing: This involves a stepping back from group activity to look critically at the group's dynamics. E.g., students can be asked to ”list at least three actions that members took that helped the group succeed,” and to ”list at least one that could make the group even more successful in the future”.

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