Universitat Jaume I (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN18 Proceedings
Publication year: 2018
Pages: 6353-6361
ISBN: 978-84-09-02709-5
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2018.1508
Conference name: 10th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 2-4 July, 2018
Location: Palma, Spain
Over last decades, a large body of research has indicated that cooperative learning - i.e., students working cooperatively together in small groups to accomplish shared goals - is a pedagogical practice by which students gain both academically and socially. Individual’s interaction with other members in a team has been found to be a useful way for effective learning and a valuable tool for learning in academic institutions (Tsay and Brady, 2012). Interaction among team members provides the opportunity to learn from other’s scholarship, skills, and experiences, encouraging clarification of ideas and critical thinking. Moreover, cooperative learning enhances students’ responsibility for their own learning, quality of reasoning and information retention.

As a consequence, cooperative learning has become a commonly used form of active pedagogy and continues attracting much academic attention. Furthermore, cooperative learning has been found as a way of promoting social or interactional skills such as communication, reasoning, trust-building, negotiation, cooperation, knowledge transfer or leadership (Johnson, Johnson, and Smith, 1991). Those social skills are prompted as competences highly required in a global and competitive marketplace. Thus, cooperative learning provides students with a broad range of skills that are key to their success in the professional settings. However, despite its importance, limited research has uncovered how cooperative learning works in higher education.

Therefore, the aim of this study is to investigate the importance of cooperative learning in higher education through the analysis of the student’s perceptions about their learning performance, by comparing such different pedagogical methodologies, individual vs cooperative learning techniques. Specifically, the study is focused on the implementation of cooperative learning methodologies in a business management subject of the degrees in Computer Science and Computational Mathematics at Universitat Jaume I (Castellón, Spain), where the application of cooperative learning methodologies is less frequent. Data about the perceptions of the students will be gathered through surveys to the students in order to analyze their opinion and satisfaction with this methodology.

The results of the surveys highlight the importance of cooperation as a key pedagogical technique to promote learning in such academic disciplines and as an essential competence for future professionals in a globalized and interrelated marketplace.
Cooperative learning, team-based learning, higher education, student's perceptions.