The learning process has increasingly become complex due to the incorporation of diverse student needs, education objectives, and the changing knowledge needs in the current working environment. As such, there are various proposals to improve student achievement in their respective levels of education depending on their learning capabilities. In this case, cooperation is the most effective method of increasing student learning since it allows learners to work in collaboration, on various tasks as assigned by their teachers. The modern world requires collaboration and teamwork in addition to working individually justifying that cooperation is the best approach not only to improve student performance but also prepare them for the practical world.
According to Brame & Biel (2016), cooperation is part of the concept of cooperative learning where students are required to participate in groups so that they can achieve an assigned task. Cooperation is structured in a way that students work together, and they only pass when all others have passed. This is a good way of increasing performance since students with higher learning abilities, learning speeds, and knowledge, are grouped together with their counterparts who have a lower learning ability so that they can elevate their learning outcomes. In the end, struggling students make better achievements creating classroom performance that is not disparate; whereby, the difference in performance is high.
Additionally, cooperation enhances student performance through the formation of learning interdependencies among the participants. Students are normally assigned one common task that is further broken down into individual responsibilities. Each has a subtask and is accountable for aiding in the completion of the larger assignment making the success of the group dependent on everyone’s effort. This ensures that students work collaboratively to help each other, share knowledge, and improve learning in ways that could not have happened if they were allowed to compete among themselves or work individually (Tran, 2014).
Students also benefit from this approach in terms of being more motivated to learn even if the classroom contents seem difficult to comprehend (Sharratt & Planche, 2016). Most of the time they know that they can be helped by their counterparts in a language they can understand and they can query concepts from multiple rationales, of which, is difficult if this process is teacher led. In other words, adopting cooperation as a form of learning strategy makes the process fun, enjoyable, and participative; thereby, enabling students to achieve more by sharing knowledge and seeking clarifications from teachers where necessary.
In fact, it allows students to discuss and engage in critical thinking on various concepts that they have learnt in class. As explained by Tran (2014), cooperation as compared to individualism and competitive models of learning provides opportunities for in-depth discussion of learned concepts, and students apply different levels of rationality and critical thinking without being bound by a given approach. These students learn more and have higher chances of remembering their learning experiences and content for longer timeframes. However, making such achievements requires articulated classification of students so that they complement each other’s learning capabilities rather than creating small environments of competitive learning.
The modern world has indicated its demand for people who have the capacity to work together and achieve common goals. Cooperation is aligned to such requirement since it ensures that students learn to work together. Though their tasks are smaller and less complex, cooperation is an important professional skill applicable outside of the classroom environment. It is interactive and ensures that every party participates and is engaged in the process of learning under the guidance of the teacher. In the end, students experience higher levels of achievement as they are motivated to learn and share their knowledge amongst themselves.
- Brame, C. J., & Biel, R. (2016). Group work: Using cooperative learning groups effectively.
- Sharratt, L. & Planche, B. (2016). Leading Collaborative Learning: Empowering Excellence. London, UK: Sage Publications.
- Tran, V. D. (2014). The effects of cooperative learning on the academic achievement and knowledge retention. International Journal of Higher Education, 3(2), 131.