Academic journal article Educational Technology & Society

Social Networks-Based Adaptive Pairing Strategy for Cooperative Learning

Academic journal article Educational Technology & Society

Social Networks-Based Adaptive Pairing Strategy for Cooperative Learning

Article excerpt


Traditional learning methods have been gradually shifted from individual learning to cooperative learning, because of the ubiquity of e-Learning. By using the fast interaction between people and the obtainment of the test grades, the learning method uses not only the grades, but the selection of partner is also important (Hansen, 2003; Rosenberg, 2001). A good grouping method for cooperative learning has to take into account many factors, such as learning achievement, the depth of teaching materials and categories. As such, personal traits, good relationships, learning behaviors all have something to with the learning results. For the same reason, the friends of an individual can be considered as the incentive of cooperative learning (Mason & Rennie, 2008).

Figure 1 is the framework of friendship network, indicating the attempt to find out appropriate pairing of cooperative learning by the pairing of friendship network. Figure 1(a) illustrates the friendship of each student. If the connection between two students is linear, they are friends. Figure 1(b) shows the member paired within the friendship. Although this study tries to pair the members, the result is not exactly the same as expected. In the example, one of the students in this cluster did not have a friend, and thus, a high achiever was assigned to him.


Pairing strategy (PS) also raised a few questions: (1) Why friendship of individual aid learning? (2) When to use paired learning? From two perspectives, learning cannot be separated from making friends in daily life.

1. Learning cannot be separated from group. In this case, learning is not simply internalizing the course contents. It also includes learning correct knowledge and the methodology to obtain the knowledge. Group provides a place for both observation and mutual verification. Teaching can be considered as explicitness of the internalization of individuals.

2. Course needs interaction. The majority of courses are completed by project or cooperation of several people. No matter which method is used, i.e., by grouping or by relay, completing a course involve different degree of discussion or interaction. For the members, sharing job or discussing the course direction is a kind of direct interaction.

These two statements point out that learning and friends are relevant. They also point out the first step of cooperative learning--collaborators. Apparently, good friends interact most frequently and thus most suitable for collaboration. This explains the second question, i.e., making friends aid learning. As a result, how the cooperative learning works has become a major concern in these researches.

For achievement, we build four modules to achieve this: friendship ranking, achievement detection, dynamic pair assignment, and evaluation. The main contributions of the paper can be summarized as follows:

1. We proposed an efficient pairing strategy for enhancing the learning and testing results of students based on the notion of cooperative learning.

2. The proposed method is built on Hyper Grid Learning System (HGLS, an e-Learning system we developed, and is applied to the actual teaching, by pairing based on the seats in the classroom and using it to learn, test, and feedback for both teachers and students.

Related works

Learning is a process of replication and innovation. From the previous experience, the learners can develop their own traits. In this section, we talk about the learning process from modeling to the paired learning.

Social learning

From the perspective of social learning theory, in the social situations, the majority of individual behaviors is learned from observation and modeling. By observing the other individual's behaviors, an individual can form the concept of how to behave and use this coding information to guide his/her action in the future (Akers, 2009). …

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