PreprintPDF Available

What Can Teachers Do to Make the Group Work Learning Effective - a Literature Review

Authors:
Preprints and early-stage research may not have been peer reviewed yet.

Abstract and Figures

Group work-based learning is encouraged in higher education on account of both ped-agogical benefits and industrial employers's requirements. However, although a plenty of studies have been performed, there are still various factors that will affect students' group work-based learning in practice. It is important for the teachers to understand which factors are influenceable and what can be done to influence. This paper performs a literature review to identify the factors that has been investigated and reported in journal articles. Fifteen journal articles were found relevant and fifteen factors were identified, which could be influenced by instructors directly or indirectly. However, more evidence is needed to support the conclusion of some studies since they were performed only in one single course. Therefore, more studies are required on this topic to investigate the factors in different subject areas.
Content may be subject to copyright.
What Can Teachers Do to Make the Group Work
Learning Effective - a Literature Review
Cong Peng
June 13, 2019
Abstract
Group work-based learning is encouraged in higher education on account of both ped-
agogical benefits and industrial employers’s requirements. However, although a plenty of
studies have been performed, there are still various factors that will affect students’ group
work-based learning in practice. It is important for the teachers to understand which fac-
tors are influenceable and what can be done to influence. This paper performs a literature
review to identify the factors that has been investigated and reported in journal articles. Fif-
teen journal articles were found relevant and fifteen factors were identified, which could be
influenced by instructors directly or indirectly. However, more evidence is needed to sup-
port the conclusion of some studies since they were performed only in one single course.
Therefore, more studies are required on this topic to investigate the factors in different
subject areas.
1 Introduction
Most courses in higher education contain one or more assignments or projects that require stu-
dents to work in groups. It is due to both the pedagogical reason and practical reason [1]. Indus-
trial employers usually require graduates being capable of working in teams, which motivates
higher education educators to develop more on students’ group work abilities [1, 2, 3, 4, 5].
Moreover, a large amount of studies reported that the group work experience has many pos-
itive impact on students’ learning, various benefits range from motivating [6], responsibility
building [7], individual accountability, social skill training [8], collaborative problem solving
[9], to group processing ability training and deep learning [10]. Practically, organizing sutdents
to as groups enables teachers to effectively handle the increasing number of students enrolled
in higher education. It can also improve the first year experience of many students that have
isolation feeling at the beginning of their higher education [11].
The benefits are many and the expectation is high. However, problems exist in this type of
group work-based learning, which will affect the experience and outcome of students’ learning.
Many studies have been performed to investigate or discuss the impact of the different factors
that affect the group work learning. For example, as a big threat to group based learning,
the impact of “free riders” existing in a group, some studies documented it as social loafing,
has been investigated or discussed in [12, 13, 14]. Although the result in [14] shows that
the appearance of free riders does not significantly decrease the quality of the group’s project
work, the expected outcomes such as responsibility building, social skill developing and group
1
processing training are certainly affected. A related factor, fair grading and evaluation of group
work delivery, has also been studied, from peer evaluation method [1] to lecture participation
and assessment [15]. Course design, group members’ language proficiency and multi-cultural
background [2, 16] are thought to be impact factors to make group work effective as well.
Among the aforementioned factors, a better course design and instruction, well considered
grading and evaluation method are absolutely what teachers can do to make a positive influence
on the group work learning. Language proficiency is not likely a factor that the teachers can
make a influence. The factor of having group members from multi-cultural background may
have positive or negative impact if the teachers influenced differently [1]. Therefore, it is
important for the teachers to understand which factors are influenceable by the teachers and
what the teachers can do to influence.
The aim of this literature review study is to identify the teacher-influenceable factors, either
direct or indirect, that are important for the group work learning of students. The outcome,
will be presented as identified factors and the discussion of their impact and inter-correlation,
are not meant to tell what should teachers do, but to present what have been explored, which
factors have been tried on influencing by using what methods. So that the teachers can have an
insight on what could be done to avoid in advance or influence during the process to make the
group work learning process to be effectively functional as expected.
The rest of this paper is structured as follows. Section 2 introduces some of the concepts that
closely related to this study. Section 3 presents the literature review method. The results alone
with discussions are presented in section 4. The paper is concluded in section 5 with discussion
of the aware limitations and potential risks of this study.
2 Background
Group work is not just assign a few students into a group to finish an assignment. Students are
expected to develop many different abilities during the group work learning. A plenty of studies
have been done in the higher education pedagogy research field that relate to the improvement
of student group work based learning.
Casual interaction, cooperative learning or collaborative learning, and Team Based Learning
(TBL) are classified by Fink as three types of using groups in higher education [17]. Casual in-
teraction is a type of short interaction between students during lectures. It can be happened that
the students discuss and share thoughts and answers with neighbor students after the teacher
asked a question during a lecture [18].
Many studies has demonstrated the benefits of cooperative learning [19], including motivating
[6], responsibility building [7], and critical thinking stimulating [20]. In addition, students’
positive interdependence, individual accountability, social skill and group processing ability
could also be promoted with cooperative learning [8].
There are also a big amount of studies reported the benefits of collaborative learning, where the
benefits to the students are similar to the benefits of cooperative learning [14]. Collaborative
learning is a term that sometimes used interchangeable to cooperative learning. However, there
are differences mentioned between them, where collaborative learning is more of students mak-
ing progress independently within the group. There is also a definition that cooperative learning
is a structured type of collaborative learning, where students making progress interdependently
2
to achieve mutual goals [14]. So that collaborative learning becomes an upper type group based
learning of cooperative learning and TBL.
TBL was originally constructed by Michaelsen, Knight and Fink in the 1970s [21]. What TBL
differs from cooperative learning or collaborative learning are the interaction, interdependency,
cohesiveness, accountability, shared responsibility and the time period that the members work-
ing together [17, 18].
As there are a plenty of studies on group work learning, there are also literature review studies
that investigate on different perspectives. The topic of the review study performed by Riebe,
Girardi and Whitsed is very close to this review. They tried to identify the factors in academic
publications that are perceived to afford or constrain teamwork pedagogy in higher education
[3]. The identified transaction costs are temporal, fiscal and human resource, which are con-
sidered to contraint the application of teamwork education. They also identified influencing
factors range from curriculum design to team composition. However, they didn’t investigate or
discuss what can instructors do to influence those factors.
3 Method
As a method to obtain an overview of prior research regarding a topic, literature review was
used to investigate the factors that have been already studied [22]. ERIC database was used
as the main source, Google Scholar was used for supplementary search. Firstly, initial arti-
cle search and review were performed together with thesaurus search to formulate the search
keywords. Thorough database search was then be performed to identify relevant articles.
3.1 Inclusion/exclusion criteria
The included articles have to be published and indexed by database before the March of 2019,
since the review study started in March 2019. We considered only peer-reviewed journal ar-
ticles for the purpose of keeping a high quality standard for this review. We also excluded
articles not written in English and duplicated publications of the same study that have been
already included. The following inclusion and exclusion criteria were also applied to screen
articles to keep the study focus on the topic.
Inclusion at least one of the following criteria is fulfilled
Articles investigating one or more factors relate to students’ group work learning
experience.
Articles investigating one or more factors relate to students’ group work learning
outcome.
Articles investigating one or more factors relate to students’ perception towards
group work learning.
Exclusion any of the following criteria is fulfilled
Article’s study is a quantitative research but does not manipulate or has no compar-
ing group for any factor.
Article’s study is only investigating the effects or benefits of group based learning.
3
Article’ study is not on the higher education level.
The study aims at online or remote education.
3.2 Process
Figure 1 shows the process of the literature search and screen. As aforementioned, several
rounds of initial article searches (performed in ERIC database and Google Scholar) and the-
saurus search were performed to help formulating search keywords.
Thesaurus
search
Initial search
in database
Formulated search
keywords
Search in ERIC
Article set = 300
Screen phase 1:
Exclusion by title
Article set = 102
Screen phase 2:
Exclusion by abstract and
keywords
Result set = 35
Screen phase 3:
Inclusion by full text
Result set = 13
Inclusion set = 15
Supplement search in
Google Scholar
Figure 1: Flow chart of the literature review process
With the formulated search keywords, 300 peer reviewed journal articles were found in ERIC
database. The search string used is a combination of the following parts:
group work (“group work” OR “group project” OR “team work” OR “team project” OR
“group-work” OR “groupwork” OR “teamwork” OR “team learning” OR “team based
learning”) AND
teacher influence (“factor*” OR “effect*” OR “contraint*” OR “restrict*” OR “affordance*”
OR “benefit*” OR “interfere*” OR “impact*” OR “affect*” OR “influence*”)
role condition (“teacher” OR “instruct*” OR “educat*”) AND (“student”)
exclude remote education -descriptor:(“online learning” OR “online education” OR “remote
learning” OR “remote education” OR “distance learning” OR “distance education”)
scope +educationlevel:“higher education”
Terms including team based learning, cooperative learning and collaborative learning have been
used in the initial searches with the above combination. However, there were no difference to
the search results.
A 3-phase article screening was then performed to screen relevant articles to the inclusion
article set.
Phase 1 Performed on the article set from ERIC database search results, to exclude articles
that are absolutely irrelevant based on inclusion and exclusion criteria by reading the
titles. As this is an exclusion screening process, which means an article will be excluded
only if it is sure that the title tells the article is talking about a totally irrelevant topic.
4
Otherwise, the article will be kept to the next phase. 102 articles were kept in the article
set after this phase.
Phase 2 Performed on the article set from phase 1, to exclude articles that are irrelevant based
on inclusion and exclusion criteria by reading the titles, abstract, keywords. 35 articles
were kept in the article set after this phase.
Phase 3 Performed on the article set from phase 2, to include articles that are relevant based
on inclusion and exclusion criteria by looking into full text. The result article set of this
phase is the final inclusion article set. 13 articles were kept in the article set after this
phase.
To avoid the omission of relevant articles that are not indexed by ERIC database, a supplement
search in Google Scholar was performed by using a similar keywords combination. The first
100 articles by relevance of the search results were screened with the same 3-phase process. 2
articles were included to the inclusion set, which makes the number increased to 15.
4 Result
4.1 Included studies
Finally 15 articles are identified as relevant. Some of the studies investigated more than one
factor. Table 1 lists all the included studies with their research design and limiting conditions.
3 studies were performed on multi-disciplinary subjects or courses. The limiting condition
indicates that a certain study’s validity or generality is limited by that condition of study. A
summarized finding of each included study is listed in Table 3 in Appendix. Figure 2 presents
the type of research method used by the included studies. We can see that the majority of
studies performed quantitative research method or a combination of quantitative and qualitative
methods, only 1 study performed only qualitative study.
Table 1: Included studies
ID Subject area Research design Limits
[23] Business Quantitative; N=140 students; 2 semesters 1 course
[24] Software Engineering Quantitative; N=327 students; 5 semesters 1 subject,
unbalanced
gender distri-
bution
[25] Finance Quantitative+Qualitative; N=69 students;
3 classes
1 subject
[26] Multi-disciplinary Qualitative; N=6 students Limited par-
ticipants
[27] Computer Science Quantitative+Qualitative; N=50 students 1 course
[28] Writing Quantitative+Qualitative; N=40 students;
2 semesters
1 course
[29] Finance Quantitative; N=500 students; 5 semesters
[30] Biology Quantitative+Qualitative; N=47 students;
[31] Psychology Quantitative; N=187 students 1 course
Continued on next page
5
Continued from previous page
ID Subject area Research design Limits
[32] Multi-disciplinary Quantitative; N=359 students; 11 instruc-
tors; 17 courses
[33] Business Quantitative; N=155; 2 courses
[34] Business Quantitative; N=88 students; 3 sections 1 course
[35] Multi-disciplinary Quantitative; N=243 students;
[2] Actuarial science Quantitative; N=290 students; 3 semesters 1 course
[14] Sociology Quantitative; N=101 students 1 course
Figure 2: Type of research method
4.2 Factors
Table 2 lists the 15 identified factors from the included articles. These factors are directly ex-
tracted from the included articles. Some of the factors are synthesized and abstracted to have
better representation without altering its original meaning. The 15 factors are grouped in to 5
categories by their similarities and the sources of problem. The 5 categories are group forma-
tion,group dynamics,individual,assessment and instruction, which is inspired by the study
[3]. Many of the factors are inter-related, i.e., one factor could be influenced by influencing
certain other factor. And factors between groups are not totally separated, e.g., the factors in
the individual group is of course highly related to the factors in the group dynamic.
What needs to be noted is that a factor listed in Table 2 does not mean that it has been proven
to be influenceable or effective, but has been investigated in a study on trying to influence.
The Impacted column contains the parts of learning that could be impacted by a factor and
investigated in the included studies. The Influence column indicates if a factor could be directly
or indirectly influenced by instructors according to the included studies and analysis.
4.2.1 Group formation
How a group is formed directly relates to how would the group perform on the task. And it
also can be controlled by instructors directly. The study performed by El Massah [25] finds that
majority of students prefer to form groups by their own affinities, rather than to be randomly
6
Table 2: Factors by group
Factor group Factor Impacted Influence Study
Group formation Group forming
method
experience; per-
ception
direct [25, 27, 24]
Gender difference process; perfor-
mance
direct [24]
Group Dynamics Team charters process direct [34]
Group motivation performance indirect [29]
Group instability performance indirect [29]
Individual Free rider experience; per-
ception; process;
performance
indirect [25, 14, 26]
Peer accountability experience; pro-
cess
indirect [28]
Perception and atti-
tude
process; perfor-
mance
indirect [30]
Learning style pref-
erence
performance indirect [23]
Assessment Evaluation method satisfaction; pro-
cess
direct [31]
Peer evaluation satisfaction; per-
ception; process
direct [25, 35, 14, 29]
Instruction Instructional design perception direct [28, 31, 2]
Insturctor assistance performance direct [33]
Instructor training performance direct [32]
Activity tracking process; satisfac-
tion
direct [25]
7
grouped or grouped based on skills. However, the students formed group is not considered as a
preferred way from the instructor’s view. A study shows that strangers in a group may perform
better than acquaintances on the group work [36]. And it may also hinder the instructors from
having accurate assessments, for example tracking the free riders, which will be discussed later.
Kyprianidou et al. investigated the impact of group formation based on students’ learning styles
[27]. They developed a Web system named PEGASUS to let students identify their learning
styles and then assign them into heterogeneous groups. This study provides an evidence that
group formation based on students’ learning styles has a positive effect on students group work,
and the adoption of learning style theories can facilitate automated group formation. The results
revealed that the students were benefited since the heterogeneity of learning styles within the
group emphasized complementarities and pluralism in students’ ways of thinking.
Another group formation model that takes account of students preferences and teacher’s con-
siderations was proposed by Sahin [24]. The 3 years long study shows that the proposed model
is better than random selection, teacher selection and student selection in terms of group project
grades.
Another interesting result in Sahin’s study is that the gender difference in groups is found
having negligible effect on group’s performance and activities [24]. However, the validity of
the result is limited since the study was performed only in one Software Engineering course,
where male students are far more than female students.
4.2.2 Group dynamics
A good dynamics is very important for a group to function well on the tasks. 3 factors in-
vestigated in 2 studies are found to be classified in this factor group. The study finds that
the introduction of team charters can improve the process outcomes of group work including
communication effort, mutual support, cohesion and member satisfaction [34]. The introduc-
ing of team charters can provide common references for disagreements and decision making,
issues such as operating guidelines, behavioral norms and performance management could be
addressed. This could be suggested by instructors when forming groups, provided with some
practice examples. It could benefit either groups formed by either acquaintances or strangers.
The results of the study performed by Koppenhaver and Shrader [29] suggest that the partly
instructor controllable factors group motivation and instability are particularly important to a
group’s performance. They suggest that group activities should be significant on its weight
for grading, and peer evaluations should be used and graded, to encourage and also ensure the
work will be done in the form of a group. They also found that the diversity of personality
characteristics in groups can mitigate the impact to performance due to group instability.
4.2.3 Individual
As a group is formed by individuals. The differences among individuals usually impact how
does a group function. Free rider is regarded as a serious threat to the students’ group work-
based learning and unable to be directly influenced by instructors [25]. Various methods have
been tried to mitigate the negative impact of free riders, including non-self forming groups, peer
evaluation, activity tracking and so on. However, many of the studies reported that it is difficult
to totally eliminate free riders. As aforementioned, students preferred to form groups according
to their own affinities, which results in students are not inclined to report their friends’ free
8
riding. Consequently, instructors cannot rely upon peer evaluation to distinguish free riders
[25].
Similarly, the study performed in [26] also reported that it is not able to eliminate free riders
due to reasons including looseness of group formation, special bond of group members, lack of
group activities supervision and students varies workloads. However, the results in [14] show
an interesting point that groups with free riders did not submit significantly lower quality work
than the groups without free riders. Free riders do not depress the grades of non-free rider
students.
Peer accountability is not able to be directly influenced by instructors as well, but it could
be positively influenced by implementing collaborative learning, which is also related to the
instructional design and instructor assistance [28]. The factor of students perceptions and at-
titudes is another one that seems not able to be influenced by instructors. However, the mis-
conception on the objectives of group work and the attitudes of perceiving group work as a
means of getting passed [30] can be adjusted by the instructor’s well-motivated guidance and
appropriate activity design, which also relate to other factors.
The aforementioned group formation method based on students’ learning styles can have a
positive effect on students group work [27]. The learning style preferences is a also individual
factor that will impact an effective group work learning. The influence of this factor varies with
educational experience, gender and major [23]. Learning style of a higher education student
is hard to be influenced in a short time in order to fit for the group work, but as mentioned,
instructors can utilize the variety of learning styles to form groups to further improve the group
work effectiveness [27].
4.2.4 Assessment
A number of studies reported that evaluation method relates to students’ satisfaction and per-
formance, especially the using of peer evaluation. Peer evaluation is suggested to be used to
emphasize the weight of group activities for increasing group motivation [29].
In the study performed by Zedda et al., 187 psychology students were divided into 3 cohorts
with 3 different evaluation methods for the group performance, which are overall teacher’s
evaluation, overall teacher’s plus peers’ evaluation, and two teachers’ plus peers’ evaluation
[31]. The results indicate that the students preferred that evaluation methods that take account
both teacher’s and peers’ evaluation.
The results of the study by Planas-Llado et al. also indicate that the students, 243 students
from 6 subjects including social sciences, science and engineering, regarded peer evaluation
as positive [35]. It also finds that it is very important to explain the evaluation process with
guidelines to the students before the peer evaluation activity. The teachers’ and students’ prior
experience in peer evaluation are also important for the successful use of peer evaluation.
However, there are something needs to be kept in mind. The overall assessment method should
be designed carefully, especially for the weight of peer evaluation in the total course evaluation.
Because students’ peer evaluations may not correlate with their course performance, as reported
by Dingel et al. [14].
In addition, when using peer evaluation, the instructors need to have a good group formation
method, rather than let students form groups by themselves. As reported by El Massah, stu-
dents prefer to form groups by their own affinities, it may hinder the instructors to get accurate
9
assessments from peer evaluation since students may not objectively evaluate how their friends
performed in the group [25].
4.2.5 Instruction
Although group work in a higher education setting is usually performed in the way of two or
more students independently and collaboratively conducting a project, the instruction part is
still quite important and considered direct influencing factors.
Instructional design is one of the mostly studied factors among the instruction related factors.
Instructional design affects students perceptions on the group work very much. A study shows
that providing the student groups with a pro-forma set of group rules to follow made signif-
icantly positive impact on the students perceptions on 3 dimensions including effectiveness,
assistance and enjoyment [2]. And how much care paid by instructor on designing the peda-
gogy activities influences the degree of benefits that the students obtained from the group work
learning [28]. When designing instructions and pedagogical activities, instructor’s care paid
on increasing group peer accountability and fair assessment, such as combined evaluation from
both instructor and peer students, is also considered important to students’ satisfaction and
performance [28, 31].
Not only the instructional design affects a lot on the students group work, the assistance pro-
vided by the instructors can also affect in different ways. The results of the study by Swaim
and Henley indicate that the instructor’s collaborative assistance and the rational persuasion
demonstrated by the instructor have an impact on student’s value placed on the group work,
which further affect the group project goal commitment [33]. Where instructor’s active involve-
ment such as offering suggestions may not have direct effect, while the logical and persuasive
motivation on the benefits of working as a group can have more direct effect.
As instructors have direct impact on students’ learning and development of group working
skills, therefore, it is extremely important for the instructors having sufficient knowledge on in-
structing group-based work for students, especially when students lacking experience on group
work. The study performed by Burbach et al. demonstrates that the training to the instructors
on effective use of group work can have a significant impact on student group work knowledge,
skills and abilities [32]. Workshop on related topics, periodical peer discussion and current
literature review on related topics are considered useful methods for instructor training [32].
Another factor that has been investigated can be classified as activity tracking to mitigate the
impact of free riders. It is reported in the study performed by El Massah that using mobile
applications can help instructors [25].
5 Conclusion
The purpose of this review was to identify the teacher-influenceable factors that are important
to the students’ group work based learning. 15 journal articles were found relevant through
database searches. 15 factors were identified and grouped into 5 categories. Many of the iden-
tified factors are inter-correlated to each other. The 15 factors were found to be influenceable
by instructors directly or indirectly. However, many of the included studies investigated certain
factors in only 1 course in 1 subject area. Some of the studies found the results to be insufficient
to support the conclusion, or the impact of certain factors are negligible. It indicates that more
studies are required on this topic to investigate the factors in different subject areas.
10
This review study is a small scale initial investigation of existing research. Therefore, there
exists potential risks and limitations. Although initial search and review were performed to
formulate database search string, certain related concepts and terms might still be left out to
the database searches. The first phase of the article screening was performed as excluding
irrelevant articles by reading titles. It may still cause relevant articles being screened out,
though this screening phase tended to remove only articles that whose titles are thought to be
totally irrelevant. The extraction and grouping of factors are not a perfect and clearly separated
mapping, which could leave confusion and indistinction to the readers.
Appendix
Table 3: Findings of included studies
ID Finding
[23] The students’ collaborative orientation complements participation and helps to com-
pete, which increases team performance. The inuence of learning style varies with
educational experience, gender and major.
[24] The group formation model proposed in the study is found better than random se-
lection, teacher selection and student selection in terms of group project grades. It
also finds the gender difference in group has negligible effect on group performance
and activities.
[25] Students still have positive views on group work despite the presence of free rid-
ers, but prefer to form groups by theirselves. Peer evaluation is found unreliable.
Free rider is regarded as a serious threat and calls for actions and strategies from
institutions and instructors. The study points out that mobile applications can help
instructors to mitigate free riding.
[26] The study concludes that it is not able to eliminate free riders due to reasons includ-
ing looseness of group formation, special bond of group members, lack of group
activities supervision and students varies workloads.
[27] The study provides an evidence that group formation based on students’ learning
styles has a positive effect on students group work, and the adoption of learning
styles theories can facilitate automated group formation. The results revealed that
the students were benefited since the heterogeneity of learning styles within the
group emphasized complementarities and pluralism in students’ ways of thinking.
[28] The study finds that the degree of peer accountability in the group and the instruc-
tor’s care in designing the pedagogy activities influenced the degree of benefits that
the students obtain from collaborative learning.
[29] The results of the study suggest that group motivation and instability are particularly
important to a group’s performance. Group activities should be signicant on its
weight for grades, and peer evaluations should be used and graded. The diversity of
personality characteristics in groups can mitigate the impact of group instability.
[30] The result of the study indicates that the students had misconception on the objec-
tives of group work, and they perceived group work as a means to pass the task
rather than to study collaboratively.
[31] The findings of the study show that group work learning method increased the
students’ satisfaction. The students preferred performance evaluation method that
takes account both teacher’s and peers’ evaluation.
Continued on next page
11
Continued from previous page
ID Finding
[32] The study demonstrates that the training to the instructors on effective use of group
work had a significant impact on student group work knowledge, skills and abilities,
based on the pre and post-test scores of 359 students.
[33] The results of the study indicates that instructor collaborative assistance and rational
persuasion demonstrated by instructor have an impact on student value placed on
group work, which further affect the group project goal commitment.
[34] The study finds that the introduction of team charters improved process outcomes of
group work including communication effort, mutual support, cohesion and member
satisfaction.
[35] The study finds that it is impotant to explain the assessment process with guidelines
to the students before the peer evaluation activity. The teachers’ and students’ prior
experience in peer evaluation are the main factors influencing the evaluation and
perception of group work. The students regarded peer evaluation as positive.
[2] The study explores factors, including instructional design regarding provided scaf-
folding, expectations and roles in the group, that influence student perceptions of
group work on 3 dimensions including effectiveness, assistance and enjoyment.
Providing groups with a pro-forma set of group rules to follow made significantly
positve impact on student perceptions.
[14] The results show that groups with free riders did not submit significantly lower
quality work than the groups without free riders. Free riders do not depress the
grades of non-free rider students. The students’ peer evaluations do not correlate
with their course performances.
References
[1] Deborah A. Trytten. Progressing from Small Group Work to Cooperative Learning: A
Case Study from Computer Science*. Journal of Engineering Education, 90(1):85–91,
jan 2001.
[2] Adam Butt. Quantification of Influences on Student Perceptions of Group Work. Journal
of University Teaching & Learning Practice, 15(5), dec 2018.
[3] Linda Riebe, Antonia Girardi, and Craig Whitsed. A Systematic Literature Review of
Teamwork Pedagogy in Higher Education. Small Group Research, 47(6):619–664, dec
2016.
[4] Xiaobing Zhang and Xin Zou. University Students’ Employability Skills Model Based on
Chinese Employer Perspective. Journal of Human Resource and Sustainability Studies,
2013.
[5] Hart Research Associates. Falling short? College learning and career success. Technical
report, 2016.
[6] Emma K. Bartle, Jan Dook, and Mauro Mocerino. Attitudes of tertiary students towards a
group project in a science unit. Chemistry Education Research and Practice, 12(3):303–
311, 2011.
12
[7] Susan L. Caulfield and Hodges Persell Caroline. Teaching Social Science Reasoning and
Quantitative Literacy: The Role of Collaborative Groups, 2006.
[8] David W. Johnson and Et al. Effects of cooperative, competitive, and individualistic goal
structures on achievement: A meta-analysis. Psychological Bulletin, 89(1):47–62, 1981.
[9] Huiling Ding and Xin Ding. Project management, critical praxis, and process-oriented
approach to teamwork. Business Communication Quarterly, 71(4):456–471, 2008.
[10] Arabella Volkov and Michael Volkov. Teamwork benefits in tertiary education. Education
+ Training, 57(3):262–278, 2015.
[11] Helen Drury, Judy Kay, and Warren Losberg. Student satisfaction with groupwork in
undergraduate computer science : do things get better? In Tony Greening and Ray-
mond Lister, editors, Fifth Australasian Computing Education Conference {(ACE} 2003),
Adelaide, Australia, 4-7 February 2003, volume 20 of CRPIT, pages 77–85. Australian
Computer Society, 2003.
[12] Barbara Maiden and Bob Perry. Dealing with free-riders in assessed group work: Re-
sults from a study at a UK university. Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education,
36(4):451–464, 2011.
[13] Mikhail Kouliavtsev. Social Loafers, Free-riders, or Diligent Isolates: Self-Perceptions in
Teamwork. Atlantic Economic Journal, 40(4):437–438, dec 2012.
[14] Molly J Dingel, Wei Wei, and Aminul Huq. Cooperative learning and peer evaluation
: The effect of free riders on team performance and the relationship between course
performance and peer evaluation. Journal of the Scholarship of teaching and learning,
13(1):45–56, 2013.
[15] Sandra Clarke and Michael Blissenden. Assessing student group work: is there a right
way to do it? Law Teacher, 47(3):368–381, 2013.
[16] Mairin Laura Hennebry and Kenneth Fordyce. Cooperative learning on an international
masters. Higher Education Research and Development, 37(2):270–284, feb 2018.
[17] L. Dee Fink. Beyond small groups: Harnessing the extraordinary power of learning teams.
In Team-Based Learning: A Transformative Use of Small Groups in College Teaching,
2004.
[18] F. Wiegant, J. Boonstra, A. Peeters, and K. Scager. Team-based learning in honors science
education: The benefit of complex writing assignments, 2012.
[19] Carolyn M. Schroeder, Timothy P. Scott, Homer Toison, Tse Yang Huang, and Yi Hsuan
Lee. A meta-analysis of national research: Effects of teaching strategies on student
achievement in science in the United States. Journal of Research in Science Teaching,
44(10):1436–1460, 2007.
[20] Malefyane Tlhoaele, Adriaan Hofman, Koos Winnips, and Yta Beetsma. The impact of
interactive engagement methods on students’ academic achievement. Higher Education
Research and Development, 33(5):1020–1034, 2014.
[21] Larry K. Michaelsen, Arletta Bauman. Knight, and L. Dee Fink. Team-based learning :
a transformative use of small groups in college teaching. Stylus Pub, 2004.
13
[22] Andrew S. Denney and Richard Tewksbury. How to Write a Literature Review. Journal
of Criminal Justice Education, 24(2):218–234, jun 2013.
[23] Hulya Julie Yazici. A study of collaborative learning style and team learning performance.
Education + Training, 47(3):216–229, apr 2005.
[24] Yasar Guneri Sahin. A Team Building Model for Software Engineering Courses Term
Projects. Computers & Education, 56(3):916–922, apr 2011.
[25] Suzanna Sobhy El Massah. Addressing Free Riders in Collaborative Group Work: The
Use of Mobile Application in Higher Education, 2018.
[26] Baboucarr Njie, Soaib Asimiran, and Ramli Basri. An Exploratory Study of the Free
Riding Debacle in a Malaysian University: Students’ Perspectives. The Asia-Pacific Ed-
ucation Researcher, 22(3):257–262, aug 2013.
[27] Maria Kyprianidou, Stavros Demetriadis, Thrasyvoulos Tsiatsos, and Andreas Pombort-
sis. Group formation based on learning styles: can it improve students’ teamwork? Edu-
cational Technology Research and Development, 60(1):83–110, feb 2012.
[28] D. Michael Keleher. Mixed Classes, Mixed Methods: Writing Students’ Attitudes about
Collaborative and Intercultural Learning. Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Re-
search, 18(2):745–745, nov 2016.
[29] Gary D. Koppenhaver and Charles B. Shrader. Structuring the Classroom for Perfor-
mance: Cooperative Learning with Instructor-Assigned Teams*. Decision Sciences Jour-
nal of Innovative Education, 1(1):1–21, feb 2003.
[30] Tolessa Muleta Daba, Sorale Jilo Ejersa, and Sultan Aliyi. Student perception on group
work and group assignments in classroom teaching: The case of Bule Hora university
second year biology students, South Ethiopia: An action research. Educational Research
and Reviews, 12(17):860–866, sep 2017.
[31] Massimo Zedda, Silvia Bernardelli, and Daniela Acquadro Maran. Students’ Satisfaction
with the Group Work Method and its Performance Evaluation: A survey in an Italian
University. International Journal of Instruction, 10(3):1–14, jul 2017.
[32] Mark E Burbach, Gina S Matkin, Kem M Gambrell, and Heath E Harding. The Impact of
Preparing Faculty in the Effective Use of Student Teams, 2010.
[33] James Swaim and Amy Henley. The Use of Influence Tactics and Outcome Valence on
Goal Commitment for Assigned Student Team Projects. Journal of Management Educa-
tion, 41(1):118–145, feb 2017.
[34] Joshua R. Aaron, William C. McDowell, and Andrew O. Herdman. The Effects of a Team
Charter on Student Team Behaviors. Journal of Education for Business, 89(2):90–97, feb
2014.
[35] Anna Planas-Lladó, Lidia Feliu, Francesc Castro, Rosa Maria Fraguell, Gerard Arbat,
Joan Pujol, Joan Josep Suñol, and Pepus Daunis-i Estadella. Using peer assessment to
evaluate teamwork from a multidisciplinary perspective. Assessment & Evaluation in
Higher Education, 43(1):14–30, jan 2018.
[36] Linying Dong, Franklyn Prescod, and Bharat Shah. Does it matter if I know you before
joining the group? Investigating the moderating impact of familiarity. In Proceedings of
14
the Information Systems Educators Conference ISSN, volume 2167, page 1435. Citeseer,
2014.
15
ResearchGate has not been able to resolve any citations for this publication.
Article
Full-text available
Group Work Learning Method is a cooperative learning technique that has positive effects in learning: students’ active participation can increase both cognitive and social skills. Our work involved three cohorts of students of different years attending the same course at the University of Torino, Department of Psychology. The contents of the course were the same in all years, students were asked to form self-selected groups to find creative solutions to two cases regarding violent behavior in workplace. Satisfaction concerning this activity and the method to evaluate the performance of the activity were investigated. Findings confirm overall students’ satisfaction related to group work learning method. This satisfaction improves the scores in course and teacher skills satisfaction. About the evaluation, findings shown that students agreed teacher’s and peers’ evaluation of the performance.
Article
Full-text available
This article analyses the use of peer evaluation as a tool for evaluating teamwork and students’ perceptions of this type of evaluation. A study was conducted of six subjects included on five degree courses at the University of Girona. In all of these subjects, students carried out a team activity, evaluated the performance of the team and the involvement of its different members, and responded to a survey on their perceptions of this evaluation system. We found the main factors influencing the evaluation and perception of teamwork to be teachers’ and students’ prior experience in this type of evaluation activity, the field where it is applied, the academic year students are enrolled on and the weight of the activity in the final mark. The results show that, in general, students’ views regarding such evaluation procedures are positive.
Book
This book describes team-based learning (TBL), an unusually powerful and versatile teaching strategy that enables teachers to take small group learning to a whole new level of effectiveness. It is the only pedagogical use of small groups that is based on a recognition of the critical difference between "groups" and "teams", and intentionally employs specific procedures to transform newly-formed groups into high performance learning teams. This book is a complete guide to implementing TBL in a way that will promote the deep learning all teachers strive for. This is a teaching strategy that promotes critical thinking, collaboration, mastery of discipline knowledge, and the ability to apply it.
Article
Abstract: Free riding behavior may threaten the success of teamwork when one or more group members receive the benefits of other members’ achievements with little effort or cost of their own. This study investigates the students’ collaborative behavior to address this behavior in university settings. The study shows that students have positive views of group work despite the existence of free riders. Students like to form their own groups; consequently, peer evaluation appeared to be unreliable. The study points at free riding as a serious threat to academic productivity and calls for actions and strategies from the institution and the instructor to eradicate this behavior. The mobile application enables the instructor to track free riders and to some extent discourage their behavior. Keywords: Freeriding, Higher education, Group work, Mobile Learning, Finance students, UAE.
Article
Teamwork pedagogy has received considerable attention across a wide range of academic literature. Yet employers continue to argue that universities need to do more to better prepare graduates to work in team-based environments. Grounded in the social constructivist paradigm, this article uses a two-phase systematic literature review methodology to explore the conditions and influences affording or constraining teamwork pedagogy. A complementary thematic analysis of the articles revealed two broad themes: pedagogy and transaction costs. In almost all 57 articles, a range of factors influencing teamwork pedagogy were elaborated. Temporal, fiscal, and human resource transaction costs were identified as constraints in the application of teamwork pedagogy. An overlap of educator, student, and institutional factors are discussed as contributing to the transaction costs of implementing process-oriented teamwork pedagogy. However, the interdependent interactions among educators and students, within and across institutions, remained largely underexplored and are presented as part of a future research agenda.
Article
Project teams are a mainstay in both organizations and business schools. Despite their popularity, instructors and students often express dissatisfaction regarding assigned student team projects. In this article, we examine the effects of influence tactics available to instructors (collaborative assistance and rational persuasion) and individual student outcome valence on goal commitment for assigned team projects. Data were collected from upper-division students majoring in business administration at a large public university to examine the roles that instructors and students alike can play in increasing individual student commitment for assigned team projects. Results indicate that both instructor collaborative assistance and rational persuasion are related to individual student value placed on assigned team projects and also that this value affects overall project goal commitment. We suggest these results provide insights to assist instructors and students for increasing overall levels of student goal commitment in assigned team projects.
Article
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the understanding of the development ofstudents’ skills in the context of team-based learning. Academics have heeded the call to incorporateteam learning activities into the curricula, yet little is known of student perception of teamworkand whether they view it as beneficial to them and their future professional career. Further, this studypresents an instructional framework to guide best practice in higher education practitioners withregard to the design of teamwork assessment.Design/methodology/approach – The paper adopts a qualitative approach utilising 190 students’reflections to examine their perception of the benefits of teamwork and whether it will contribute totheir future professional work.Findings – Results indicate students perceive team-based assessment tasks require them to adopt adeep approach to learning together with a deep approach to study, as well as improving their skillsin the areas of collaboration, team unity and cultural diversity. Further, the study identified a bestpractice approach that higher education practitioners should adopt in teamwork assessment designgiving this study both national and international significance and aids fellow educators in theirpractices.Research limitations/implications – Because of the chosen research approach, the results maylack generalisability. Therefore, researchers are encouraged to test the proposed propositions further.Practical implications – The paper presents important implications for those involved in thedevelopment of assessment items where objectives include the development of team skills and qualitylearning outcomes. The findings are vital for unit and course planning and design generally, andassessment planning, design and processes, specifically, both nationally and internationally.Originality/value – This paper fulfils an identified need to study students’ perceptions of teamwork,whether they view it as beneficial to them and their future professional career, and presents a bestpractice approach for teamwork assessment design.