Collaborative learning can be defined as a learning method in which students work in groups toward a common academic goal. The patterns of interaction in a collaborative learning environment, like SI-PASS sessions, should be primarily student-to-student rather than student-leader or leader-student.
Strategies and Tips:
- The SI-PASS leader should plan for student-to-student interactions. Without careful planning, sessions will tend to be leader-to-student interactions.
- There is only so much time in a session, so the number of possible interactions is limited. The student-leader interaction results in only one student’s gaining understanding; therefore, try to increase the number of students talking during the sessions to increase the number of students gaining understanding. (The leader already understands the content and does not need to interact except to guide the students.)
- Students should ask questions to each other, and they should try to answer each other’s questions.
- Using good wait-time helps increase student-to-student interactions.
- The SI-PASS leader should redirect the questions back to other students so that students will talk to each other to learn.
- Students should work in small groups whenever possible.
- The SI-PASS leader should encourage the students to study together outside of the sessions.
- SI Supervisor Manual, The international Center for Supplemental Instruction, University of Missouri Kansas City 2014