M. Díaz-Dorner, R. Cubero

University of Sevilla (SPAIN)
Research on students' opinion about their experience in cooperative learning situations has been a broad field of study that has found results related to satisfaction, greater motivation for learning subjects and a better acceptance of the teacher. However, there is almost no research on the "real" process in natural conditions for implementing a cooperative learning program, the problems that the participants have to achieve the desired results and, more specifically, about the experiences of students during such a process.

The main objective of this research is to explore the perspective that students have about their experiences in cooperative learning in a natural context with complex problems. The methodological strategy developed here is based on an interpretive approach, using focus group technique with 3 groups of students and the content analysis of the obtained data.

The results show the students’ own categories on their cooperative learning experience. Among other things, we want to highlight two elements that do not appear in previous research. The first is the recording and analysis of critical perspectives in students about these processes and the second relates to the need to intervene in their conception of what a cooperative learning structure is and which changes involves regarding to traditional technologies (unidirectional and hierarchical ). The findings of this study contribute to minimize the difficulties and barriers that students and teachers undertake when developing a cooperative learning experience.