An Introduction to Cooperative Learning Research

  • Robert E. Slavin


Why have we humans been so successful as a species? We are not strong like tigers, big like elephants, protectively colored like lizards, or swift like gazelles. We are intelligent, but an intelligent human alone in the forest would not survive for long. What has really made us such successful animals is our ability to apply our intelligence to cooperating with others to accomplish group goals. From the primitive hunting group to the corporate boardroom, it is those of us who can solve problems while working with others who succeed. In fact, in modern society, cooperation in face-to-face groups is increasingly important. A successful scientist must be able to cooperate effectively with other scientists, with technicians, and with students. An executive must cooperate with other executives, salespersons, suppliers, and superiors. Of course, each of those relationships also has competitive elements, but in all of them, if the participants cannot cooperate to achieve a common goal, all lose out. It is difficult to think of very many adult activities in which the ability to cooperate with others is not important. Human society is composed of overlapping cooperative groups: families, neighborhoods, work groups, political parties, clubs, teams.


Student Achievement Cooperative Learning Intergroup Relation Quiz Score Increase Student Achievement 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert E. Slavin
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Social Organization of SchoolsJohns Hopkins UniversityBaltimoreUSA

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