Date of Award

1992

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

School

School of Education

Program

Leadership PhD

First Advisor

William H. Green

Second Advisor

Warren E. Minder

Third Advisor

Paul Denton

Abstract

Purpose: A qualitative case study designed to look at two student teachers' practice teaching experiences using cooperative learning was undertaken during the 1990-1991 academic year. The purpose of the study was to gain insight into student teachers' perceptions in translating theory into practice. Joyce's training model of theory, demonstration, and practice with feedback was utilized to train student teachers in cooperative learning in the college and school setting.

The researcher was guided by four major questions: (1) What happens to the cooperative learning model when student teachers practice it in the school setting? (2) What happens to student teachers as they practice teach using cooperative learning? (3) What are the contextual elements and how do they influence practice teaching? and (4) What are the perceptions and cognitions of Hispanic student teachers during training?

Method. The case studies were of two Hispanic student teachers' practice teaching experience using cooperative learning in the elementary and secondary levels. Both student teachers attended 20 training sessions of approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes during two semesters. The case studies' context included, among others: the university, the teacher education program, student teachers personal accounts, and school climate. Data were obtained from documents, archival records, participant observations, and interviews during a 12 period.

Findings. A cross-case analysis follows the case studies. Findings were reported in reference to the research questions. The findings included:

(1) The classroom configuration and cooperative learning training model were for the most part unchanged. Poor distribution of time and classroom discipline problems affected the effective practice of the cooperative learning training model.

(2) The cooperating teacher was identified as a contextual element influencing student teachers' practice teaching experiences.

(3) Problems specifically related to covering content, classroom management, and group formation were seen as most important.

(4) Reading materials on cooperative learning in English were perceived as a struggle by non-native English student teachers. They used comprehension strategies to understand the meaning of the text.

Subject Area

Student teachers--Case studies, Teachers--Training of

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