Date Approved

4-23-1996

Embargo Period

9-7-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. in Subject Matter Teaching: Biological Sciences

Department

Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math Education

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Meagher, Richard

Subject(s)

Biology--Study and teaching (Secondary); Group work in education; Interaction analysis in education

Disciplines

Science and Mathematics Education

Abstract

The purpose of this project was to determine the effect of balancing learning styles in the construction of cooperative learning groups. The investigation attempted to determine if science instruction and subsequent achievement can be enhanced by establishing effective cooperative learning groups. The Learning Style Inventory was used to determine learning styles. Then groups were formed based on either construction of balanced or unbalanced cooperative learning groups. Students then completed group activities as contained in the Celebrate Immunity Team Pack. Pretests and posttests were administered in order to measure cognitive gains. A statistical analysis of the results of the groups showed a significant difference in posttest scores in one group of students whose groups consisted of a balance of learning styles. In another class that consisted of an imbalance of learning styles no statistical significance was found in their posttest scores. This was as expected. Group construction must consist of students who can work together effectively. In determining learning styles, this balance can be achieved. However, in one group of students which consisted of groups of balanced learning styles, no statistical significance was found in their posttest scores. They did show an increase in their posttest scores, but further study is needed to determine what other variables determine the construction of effective learning groups.

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