Through the 1970s, having students spend a majority of instructional time working individually was thought to be the key for developing them into strong individuals. In the early 1980s, however, support began to spread for a new method that emphasized the importance of peer interaction in both socialization and learning: cooperative learning. In An Educational Psychology Success Story: Social Interdependence Theory and Cooperative Learning, Johnson and Johnson (2009) explore social interdependence theory and its application to education in the form of cooperative learning. Social interdependence exists when the accomplishment of an individual person’s goals is directly influenced by the actions of others. According to Johnson and Johnson (2009), social interdependence theory “provides a conceptual framework to organize thinking about cooperation and competition, summarize what is known, and generate research studies” (p.375). Cooperative learning focuses on Johnson and Johnson’s (2009) idea of positive interdependence, in which individuals see the attainment of their own goals as being directly related to the attainment of the goals of other individuals on their cooperative team and therefore cooperation is key in achievi...
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...se situations, cooperative learning should be a strong presence in every classroom and in every subject and can serve to improve not only student achievement, but students’ attitudes about school as well.
Borich, G. (2006). Effective teaching methods: research-based practice. (6th ed.). Upper
Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.
Gillies, R. M., & Boyle, M. (2010). Teachers' reflections on cooperative learning: Issues
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Johnson, D. W., & Johnson, R. T. (2009). An educational psychology success story:
Social interdependence theory and cooperative learning. Educational
researcher, 38(5), 365-379.
Zakaria, E., Chin, L. C., & Daud, M. Y. (2010). The Effects of Cooperative Learning on
Students' Mathematics Achievement and Attitude towards Mathematics. Journal
of Social Sciences, 6(2), 272.
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