INDEPENDENT VS. INSTRUCTOR-GUIDED STUDENT COLLABORATIVE LEARNING: AN ANALYSIS OF STUDENT LEARNING AND THE LEARNING PROCESS DURING UNDERGRADUATE SPEECH ACOUSTICS LAB INSTRUCTION
Loyola University Maryland (UNITED STATES)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN12 Proceedings
Publication year: 2012
Conference name: 4th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 2-4 July, 2012
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:Research has demonstrated the effectiveness of collaborative student learning. Collaborative learning allows students both to learn from and to teach their peers. Students are also able to solidify knowledge more at their own pace. However, the ability of students to learn through collaboration is limited by the collective knowledge of the students in a particular group, or at least the collective ability of that group to seek out, obtain, and/or apply necessary knowledge. This paper explores collaborative student learning in two situations: independent and instructor-guided group lab work. In both situations, the students learned necessary preliminary information about speech acoustics in a more traditional undergraduate course format: text reading and instructor lecture. Then, to allow students to solidify, expand, and apply their knowledge through experiential learning, students completed labs requiring them to record various speech productions, make predictions about acoustic characteristics, measure various acoustic components, and summarize in writing their application of the acoustic concepts. Students were divided into two groups by class situation. In the first class situation, small student groups completed the entire lab independently outside of class time. Students were allowed to ask the instructor questions during class time if they did not understand particular lab questions, but otherwise proceeded at their own rate. In the second class situation, small student groups completed the lab during class time, with instructor presentation of each lab question, and with immediate instructor assistance as needed. The two class situations were then compared to assess student learning outcomes as well as level of student collaboration. Learning was assessed through specific test questions as well as by student surveys of perceived learning and satisfaction with the learning situation provided. Level of student collaboration was assessed through student surveys. Results are discussed with regard to learning outcomes, as well as time frames for learning, use of the collaborative process and peer teaching, and most efficient use of instructor time.
Keywords: Collaborative learning, independent learning, instructor-guided learning, undergraduate instruction, peer teaching, speech acoustics.