Cooperate or Not to Cooperate? Lecturers’ Understandings and Attitudes towards Cooperative Learning
Cooperative Learning should be understood as attempts of students with different abilities to work together in a group, share a common goal, and learn with and from each other. Here a learning environment is created in accordance with some basic elements such as heterogeneous groups, positive interdependence, individual accountability, face to face interaction, interpersonal and small group skills and group processing. It has considerable relevance to ELT on account of promoting students’ achievement, providing socialization, fostering positive peer relations, and decreasing anxiety. However, research examining the picture at tertiary level remains scarce. Thus, the current case study aimed at exploring the understanding and attitudes of lecturers towards utilising CL in higher education. To this end, a semi-structured interview was conducted with six lecturers in the Department of English Language and Literature at a large-size university in the northeast part of Turkey. The results revealed that although they were positive, they were observed not to have adequate knowledge about it and mistakenly associate it with group work. The paper ends with pedagogical implications for practitioners and suggestions for further research.