Collaborative Learning

Topics: Learning, Critical thinking, Skill Pages: 5 (1482 words) Published: September 5, 2013
Essay question 3: Collaborative Learning

Introduction
In the Book Review of Collaborative Learning, Stoerger said “ emphasis on collaborative learning is pushing educational community to a new forms” (2008). Collaborative learning involves groups of people to work, such as completing a project or producing a product. All team members’ work sequentially to the project and towards to the same goal. It is quite difference with cooperative learning, which members work concurrently on the project and focus their personal objective (Dillenbourg, 1999). For a university student, it is vital to learn collaborative learning, which can benefits for their current studying and for their futures’ career path. It also exists challenges for university instructors and students, which will be demonstrated in the following essay.

Benefits of collaborative learning
At first, some of scholars believed that collaborative learning could assist students to accomplish tasks in a team and can learn from each other. They can share their knowledge, skills and resources with other team members. Collaborative learning will bring positive study performance for students and able to improve their personal skills. In the team, all members can help each other and will solve the problem together (Hardy, et al, 2005; Waite & Davis, 2006). Under this circumstance, it will help students to establish a sense of team working with their peers by sharing knowledge to the same target. They will be acknowledging that to study in a group will be more efficiency by working individually and also will learn their shortage from other peers. It is a great opportunity for them to practice teamwork skills with difference personality and to improve their knowledge by learning from others.

Secondly, collaborative learning can be a social interaction mechanism for students to develop their communication skills, which could be useful for their future (Aggarwal, 2000). During collaborative learning process, students need to communicate with each other for discussing problems and raising new ideas for the object. In order to ensure the team can work accordance and maintain in a higher grade, each team member must establish a sense of communication skill so that they can make agreements to work for the same objective. They must believe that conflicts will reduce the overall performance for the whole team. on the other side, collaborative learning help students to learn socialize skills to the outside of studying groups. In this case, they can meet more friends and improve their personality skills. The communication skill is vital for them, not only in the university that they can get along with their peers, but also they need this skill to integrate to the society and pursue their career.

Moreover, the other important benefit of collaborative learning is to learn an essential skill for the future workplace. There are five vital employability skills, which requires for all desirable employees, including personal development skills, technical skills, interpersonal skills, intellectual skills and communication skills. In the workplace, collaborative learning skill is necessary and can assist new staff to develop these five major skills (McMillan & Wayers, 2009). For example, in a team, all members will work for a common task and co-operative their behaviors, which is the main characteristics of collaborative learning. On the other case, as a new staff in the company, they must learn new knowledge and skills from seniors to improve their personal skills. Therefore, if people can handle collaborative learning when at school, it is much easier for them to work with their co-workers in the future and can improve their employability sequentially.

Furthermore, by familiar with collaborative learning, it also can promote people’s critical thinking skill. Critical thinking is to help students to think actively, not just thinking about what they see and hear, but also...
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