Cooperative Learning:  Beyond the Basics Download brochure: Pdf

Workshop Objectives

  • To develop criteria for evaluating active/cooperative learning (ACL) methodologies
  • To apply these criteria to evaluate and improve ACL implementations

Participant Background

  • Participants must have had at least one semester experience delivering a technical course using ACL methodologies.

Workshop Topics

  • ACL methodologies and applications
  • Features of good ACL implementations
  • Criteria for evaluating ACL methodologies
  • Improving ACL implementations using evaluation criteria

Workshop Agenda

  • Introduction (15 minutes)
ACL experiences (45 minutes)
  • Each team member reports a good experience and a bad experience with ACL
  • Teams report their experiences
Good and bad features of ACL implementations (30 minutes)
  • Teams discuss what features made the good experiences work and what features made the bad experiences not work. Teams summarize their discussions.
  • Features of good ACL implementations (15 minutes)
  • Workshop leaders report on features that help and hinder success with ACL implementations
Development of evaluation criteria (30 minutes)
  • Teams develop a list of criteria for evaluating ACL implementations. Teams report their lists to group.
  • Suggested evaluation criteria (15 minutes)
  • Workshop leaders present a list of evaluation criteria.
  • Revise evaluation criteria (15 minutes)
  • Each team revises its list of evaluation criteria.
  • Application of evaluation criteria (45 minutes)
  • Each team applies its evaluation criteria to the ACL implementations the members described earlier. In the process the team identifies specific shortcomings and suggests improvements. Teams report summaries of improvements.

Russ Pimmel is a Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He teaches digital systems and computer hardware courses and the senior capstone design course. In recent years he has pursued a long-term interest in teaching methodologies. He has worked with his faculty colleagues to explore teaching improvements through a program that includes a weekly colloquium, periodic faculty workshops, and an outside-speaker program. Outside of work, he enjoys reading detective novels and cooking experimental dishes.

Don César Malavé (he prefers this title to Doctor or Professor) is the ultimate puertorrican. He loves the sea, the sun, good Latin music (yes, there is also bad Latin music, such as that done by performers like Ricky Martin), rum and coke (or Cuba libre, as nonpuertorricans refer to this famous drink), his wife, his kids, and God (the order has nothing to do with importance). Don César is a full-time dad and husband and a part-time associate professor of Industrial Engineering. His dream is to one day retire and move to a beachfront house on the beautiful island of Puerto Rico. He will then spend the rest of his life playing his percussion instruments, playing with his grandchildren, and teaching at a local universityjust for fun.

Need help? Whether you're just getting started or looking for additional ideas, the Foundation Coalition would like to help you incorporate student teams into your engineering classes through workshops, Web sites, lesson plans, and reading materials. For suggestions on where to start, see our Web site, e-mail , or call 979.845.7574.



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