UBC Theses and Dissertations
The effects of cooperative learning on the on-task behavior and attitudes toward learning and school of young adolescents Neilson, Donna L.
This research investigated the effect that cooperative learning had on increasing the on-task behavior and formation of attitudes toward learning and school of young adolescents. A quasi-experimental study was conducted on a sample of 27 Grade 6 students. Embedded in this study was a detailed case study of six individuals. The teacher-researcher used a pre-posttest design employing the Harter Scale of Intrinsic Versus Extrinsic Orientation In The Classroom (1980) to measure the classroom orientation of all students and to determine their motivation for learning. T-tests and multivariate analyses were conducted on the motivational and informational components of the scale. In addition, a non-equivalent time samples design was used to investigate the on-task behavior of the 6 subjects selected for case study. The data results were analyzed using a single case experimental design of Split Middle Method Of Trend Analysis. Additional informal measures and students' journal writing provided further qualitative data to indicate students’ attitudes toward learning and school. Factors of gender and academic ability were considered. The major findings of the research were that cooperative learning increased the on-task behavior of young adolescents and their intrinsic orientation in the classroom, thus positively affecting motivation and attitudes toward learning. Gender specific data revealed that male scores significantly increased on the motivational components whereas female scores increased on the informational components of the Scale. Data also provided documentation for quality of interaction between peers as it influenced effective group functioning. The study concludes with recommendations for educators implementing cooperative learning for use with young adolescents.
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