This project aims to (1) describe the critical aspects differentiating peer-led problem-solving groups in the STEM disciplines, and (2) develop and validate an instrument to evaluate small peer-led learning groups based on those critical aspects.
The study was conducted in a small-group workshop program, the Gateway Science Workshop at Northwestern University.
The project had two phases:
- Qualitative research phase, which led to development of a theoretical model of group differences.
- Quantitative phase, which led to development and validation of a group-assessment instrument based on this model.
We further provide evidence of a factor structure consisting of these two dimensions using both exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis.
Model of Group Differences:
|Group Interaction Approach|
|Problem-Solving Approach||Simple||Simple instruction||Supported discussion|
|Elaborated||Elaborated instruction||Guided discussion|
Pazos, P., Micari, M., & Light, G. (2010). Developing an instrument to characterize peer-led groups in collaborative learning environments: Assessing problem-solving approach and group interaction. Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education, 35(2), 191-208.