Cooperative Learning, Group Formation and Performance in Problem-Solving Courses: A Case Study from an HBCU

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Felix Ayadi
Mammo Woldie
Jakeun Koo
Anthonia Warren


There are different ways educators use groups to promote learning. This study explores the possibility of improving group performance in problem-solving courses by forming teams based on hemispheric preferences. This is premised on the assumption that team effectiveness and cohesiveness can be achieved if cognitive processing characteristics of team members are considered in team formation. Four types of groups are formed in several sections of statistics classes in an HBCU.  The groups are left-brain dominant, right-brain dominant, whole-brain dominant and mixed-brain dominant students.  The ANOVA test results are indicative that average group scores for the four groups are unequal. Further analysis using the Bonferroni pairwise comparison indicates that the average score of the left-brain dominant group is higher than the right-brain dominant group score. The final conclusion is that group formation method based on brain dominance has a weak effect on group academic outcome.

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