12th Vice Chancellor, UNILAG

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    The Effects of Cooperative and Competitive Teaching Strategies on Cognitive Performance
    (University of Lagos School of Postgraduate Studies, 1998-08) Kukuru, J.D
    This study tested the degree to which the commonly reported low cognitive levels interactions in the classroom could be improved upon in Social Studies through appropriate teacher preparation. A stratified sample of 588 Social Studies learners drawn from nine secondary schools in Lagos State participated in the study. These were made up of three male schools, three female schools, and three mixed schools. Cooperative and Competitive teaching strategies were the two experimental strategies while Lecture method served as control. The design was 3 x 3 x 3 factorial: three treatments comprising Cooperative, Competitive, and Lecture (formed the first three); three types of school by gender consisting of Male, Female, and Mixed (formed the second three); and three Ability groups involving High, Low and Mixed (formed the third three). Other intervening variables tested were: teachers' abilities, learners' school status, their ages, and their parents' academic backgrounds and occupations. A total of nine instruments were used for the study. An achievement Test that was used to measure the performances of the Social Studies learners had fifty (50) objective items that covered all the six cognitive levels of Bloom and his associates supplemented by Tanner and Tanner: Information, Comprehension, Application, Analysis, Synthesis, and Evaluation. While Information and Comprehension were combined and tested as low cognitive levels, the others were combined and tested as high cognitive levels. Teachers that had been given appropriate training, taught the learners in the experiment for six weeks. A pretest was administered before interactions and a posttest was administered at the end of the interactions. Raw Scores obtained were analysed using statistical techniques, namely: Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA), Chi-Square (X2), Step-Wise Multiple Regression, and T-Tests. Main outcomes of this investigation included: i. Cooperative and Competitive teaching strategies are capable of helping teachers to achieve significantly improved high cognitive levels performance of learners. 99 ii. Whereas gender factor did not play special role in the performances of the learners, ability group of learners factor did. iii. There were significant variations in the interactive effects of Cooperative and Competitive teaching strategies on gender and ability levels of learners at the high cognitive levels: either the two strategies with gender or ability levels or the two strategies with both gender and ability levels of learners. iv. Combining Lecture Method with Cooperative and Competitive teaching strategies significantly reduces learners' performance (teaching quality). v. The percentages of Low Ability group of learners that crossed to High Ability group of learners were 77.3 and 75.0 for Cooperative and Competitive teaching strategies respectively. vi. Considering both Cooperative and Competitive teaching strategies, one intervening variable only: learners' school status, did not significantly influence the learners' performances; all others did. vii. Comprehension was identified as the beginning of the high cognitive levels. The major recommendation is that suitable professional training should be given to intending teachers in order to improve classroom interaction. This can be achieved by underscoring high cognitive levels thinking processes that will enable learners to be well developed cognitively.