The impact of some selected factors in cooperative learning on the improvement of academic performance and social behavior among grade five students at a primary school – Justification of Variables

Essay by ReggaeyouthUniversity, Master'sA+, September 2009

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Independent VariableCooperative LearningAccording to Artz and Newman (1990), cooperative learning is instruction that involves students working together in teams to accomplish a common goal, solve a problem, and complete a task under specific conditions. The cooperative learning model requires student cooperation and interdependence in its task, goal and reward structures. (Johnson, Johnson and Smith, 1991).

The researcher feels justified in using cooperative learning as his independent variable in conducting this research. The reason for the selection and usage of this variable is its proven relation with academic performance and social skills. These skills, the researcher believes, are badly needed in today's society and in the world of work.

Presently, our country is faced with the monsters - crime and violence, and illiteracy. One way in which to tackle these two problems is through education and the acquisition of highly acceptable values and attitudes. The researcher therefore feels that if persons are taught how to cooperate with others and to work out disagreements in amicable ways, these problems will be reduced significantly.

Therefore, the researcher sees it fit to instill these attributes in students from a tender age, as what is learnt will help them to effectively cope later in society. As a result, the researcher feels justified in the selection of the variable Cooperative Learning to be the focus of this study.

 Dependent VariablesAcademic PerformanceLe Roux and Lipport (1993) define academic performance as the ability to study and remember facts, being able to study effectively and see how facts fit together and form larger patterns of knowledge. Academic performance is also the ability to think for yourself in relation to facts and being able to communicate your knowledge verbally or put down on paper. Good academic performance is also linked to having good organizational skills and good time...