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Educ Stud Math (2008) 67:7791 DOI 10.


The effects of cooperative learning on Turkish elementary students mathematics achievement and attitude towards mathematics using TAI and STAD methods
Kamuran Tarim & Fikri Akdeniz

Published online: 17 July 2007 # Springer Science + Business Media B.V. 2007

Abstract This study was designed to compare the effects of Team Assisted Individualization (TAI) and Student Teams-Achievement Divisions (STAD) on fourth grade students academic achievement in and attitudes towards mathematics. Seven classes of a school were randomly selected for this experimental study. Two of these were given instruction through TAI; two through STAD, and the remaining three were treated as a control group. For the purpose of the data analysis regarding academic achievement, the 3X1 covariance analysis was used to compare the groups. As a result of this comparison, both the TAI and STAD methods were found to have positive effects (d=1.003 for TAI and d=0.40 for STAD) on students academic achievement in mathematics. The pairwise comparisons showed that the TAI method had a more significant effect than the STAD method. The scores for the attitude towards mathematics were analyzed by using non-parametric statistics. As a result of this analysis, no significant difference was observed regarding students attitudes towards mathematics. Keywords Cooperative learning . Elementary school . Mathematics . STAD . TAI

1 Introduction Cooperative learning is a set of instructional methods that requires students to work in small, mixed-ability learning groups (Slavin 1987). Cooperative learning has been in use all around the world as well as in Turkey. The main reasons for its prevalence can be attributed to its positive effects on academic achievement, peer relations, self-esteem, and attitudes and anxiety as well as its ability to include children with special needs (Sharan 1980; Slavin et al. 1984a,b,c; Leikin and Zaslavsky 1997; Johnson and Johnson 1981, 1989).
K. Tarim (*) Elementary Education Department, Cukurova University, 01330, Adana, Turkey e-mail: gkamuran@cukurova.edu.tr F. Akdeniz Department of Statistics, Cukurova University, 01330, Adana, Turkey e-mail: akdeniz@cukurova.edu.tr


K. Tarim, F. Akdeniz

Cooperative learning, which is appropriate for most school subjects, is also applicable to mathematics. Most students feel anxious when taking mathematics classes. Mathematics anxiety, as in any other subject, is multifaceted. Fiore (1999) explains that the interconnectivity of personal, societal, environmental, and pedagogical factors causes an individual to develop math anxiety. While societal and environmental factors play a role in the development of math anxiety, the way mathematics is taught and the content of mathematics lessons are the two major areas that most directly affect mathematics learning and teaching in schools (Martinez and Martinez 2003). However, cooperative groups create an environment that decreases mathematics anxiety and fear of failure by encouraging them to take appropriate risks since learning mathematical concepts and skills is not a passive process. In cooperative learning environments, students tend to enjoy mathematics, and this motivates them more to learn mathematics (Johnson and Johnson 1989). Several studies (Bryant 1981; Oishi 1983; Slavin and Karweit 1985; Emley 1986; Johnson and Johnson 1991; Gmleksiz 1997; flazolu 1999) have indicated that studying within cooperative groups is very effective in terms of improving mathematics achievement and developing positive attitudes towards mathematics. 1.1 Cooperative learning methods: TAI and STAD There are many different forms of cooperative learning, such as Teams-Games-Tournament (TGT), Jigsaw, Cooperative Integrated Reading and Composition (CIRC), Learning Together (LT), Student Teams-Achievement Divisions (STAD), Team Assisted Individualization (TAI), Academic Controversy (AC), Group Investigation (GI), etc. (see, Kagan 1992, for more details). The idea which lies beneath all cooperative learning methods is that students work together to learn and are responsible for one anothers learning as well as their own (Slavin 1990). In this paper, we investigate the effects of two structured cooperative learning methods, TAI and STAD. These two methods can easily be used in mathematics classes, and they combine cooperative goals and tasks with a high degree of individual accountability (Slavin and Cooper 1999). These two methods were used because they have simple procedures that are easy to understand, remember, and apply. In the review by Johnson et al. (2000), eight methods of cooperative learning (TGT, Jigsaw, CIRC, LT, STAD, TAI, AC, GI) were classified on a direct-conceptual continuum and correlated with the size of each methods effect on student individual achievement (in 164 studies). Furthermore, these methods were compared in terms of ease of learning, ease of initial use, ease of maintaining its use, robustness and adaptability. Based on the results of the comparison of Johnson et al. (2000), it seems that TAI and STAD had almost the same scores and were easier to adapt by teachers, compared to the other methods. According to this study STAD is a slightly more conceptual system than TAI and can be modified according to the changing conditions. We can obtain the difference between TAI and STAD via Slavins (1995, p.12) explanations. Table 1 can enlighten the reader. The only difference between TAI and STAD, according to Slavins table, is adaptation to individuals. Slavin (1995, p. 12) indicates that STAD uses group-paced instruction, whereas TAI adapts instruction to students individual needs. Our first focus is Team Assisted Individualization (TAI), which uses four memberlearning teams and certificates in high performing teams. TAI combines cooperative learning with individualized instruction (Slavin 1990). Slavin (1987) also emphasizes that this method is appropriate for mathematics classes regarding the academic achievement of grades 3 to 6 and that it can be used in higher grades as well. The studies showed that TAI

The effects of cooperative learning on mathematics Table 1 Typology of major TAI, STAD and control groups (Slavin 1995, p. 12) Method Group goals TAI STAD Yes Yes Individual accountability Yes Yes Equal opportunity for succses Team competition Task specialization No No


Adaptation to individuals Yes No

Yes (Improvement scores) No Yes (Improvement scores) Sometimes

has a positive effect on academic achievement in mathematics (Bryant 1981; Johnson et al. 2000) and attitudes towards mathematics (Bryant 1981; Slavin and Karweit 1985). On the other hand, STAD can be used in many subjects including mathematics. It is effective for student mutual influence, peer teaching, and improving many other skills. In this method, after the teacher presents a lesson, students work in their teams to try to master the lesson themselves and make sure that the other members in their team also master the lesson. In the final stage, students take individual quizzes in which they are not allowed to help other team members (Slavin 1990). The results of previous studies on STAD (Bonoparte 1990; Gmleksiz 1997; Slavin and Karweit 1984) showed that this method also had a positive effect on mathematics achievement, self-esteem, and friendship relations. Based on these findings, we decided to examine whether TAI (a program developed especially for math classes) or STAD (superior in adaptability and applicability to specific age groups) would be more effective on students achievement in and attitudes towards mathematics. Taking the main purpose of this study into consideration, the following research hypotheses were developed: 1. When cooperative learning groups (TAI, STAD) and the traditional group are compared with each other in terms of academic achievement in mathematics, there are significant differences favoring the cooperative learning groups. 2. When cooperative learning groups are compared with each other, the TAI group is expected to be more successful in terms of academic achievement in mathematics than the STAD group. 3. When cooperative learning groups (TAI, STAD) and traditional groups are compared in terms of attitudes towards mathematics, there are significant differences favoring the cooperative learning groups. 4. When cooperative learning groups are compared with each other, the TAI group is expected to have more positive attitudes towards mathematics than the STAD group.

2 Materials and methods This study used a pretestposttest control group method as a basis for its design and was carried out in a 14-week time period. As measuring tools, an achievement test and an attitude scale of mathematics were administered to students, as both a pretest and a posttest. During the experiment instruction was given to the groups by their teachers. 2.1 Subjects The subjects in this study were 248 fourth-grade students (910 years of age, in seven different classes) from a primary state school in Adana, Turkey. The TAI and STAD groups


K. Tarim, F. Akdeniz

were formed by four classes (two for each), randomly selected from the total seven. The TAI group had 73 students, and the STAD 71 students. The control group, on the other hand, had 104 students in the remaining three classes. The sample was homogeneous regarding students family backgrounds, and the schools academic achievement, when compared with other schools in Adana, was above average. All the lessons for all groups were conducted by the teachers. All the teachers had more than 5 years of teaching experience. The teachers, who already had some background information about cooperative learning, also attended a one-day seminar about TAI and STAD given by the researchers. In most class sessions, the teachers were observed by the researchers in order to make sure that the TAI and STAD methods were appropriately applied. All the necessary documentation, including lesson plans, learning materials and guidelines as to how to use them were provided for the teachers by the researchers. 2.2 Treatment The two cooperative learning methods, Team Assisted Individualization (TAI) and Student Teams-Achievement Divisions (STAD) were applied to the experimental groups as teaching methods. Heterogeneity of a small group is considered to be one of the most important issues when planning a cooperative learning setting. Students learn better in heterogeneous teams consisting of students with different ability levels (Slavin 1985; Leikin and Zaslavsky 1999). In this context, the students were classified as high, middle, and low achieving, taking into consideration their previous knowledge, achievement pretest scores, and the teachers overall evaluation of them. Finally, students learned in heterogeneus teams of four pupils in each treatment group. After the teams had been determined, students participated in activities such as turn toss, team hats, team slogans, team hand signs, brain storming, team ID cards, team logos (see Kagan 1992) in order to allow team members to get to know each other better, improve their relations with each other, and find suitable team names. During the whole study process, the teams were constantly reformed every 23 weeks (four times in total) according to the nature of the topics. All the activties mentioned above were redesigned in order to help the changing teams attain identity. After the team building, a Team Work Guidebook was given to each team. This guidebook included instruction on how the team members should study together, how they should increase overall team achievement, and how team achievement should be evaluated. Team building was an important part of this study because when team members feel attachment to the group and commitment to one another, their motivation, concentration on task, and quality of their work may reach a higher level. 2.2.1 Team Assisted Individualization (TAI) The application steps of TAI are presented below: Step 1 (Teacher Instruction). In the first two lessons of mathematics, given 5 h a week, the teachers taught the first part of the topic with whole class teaching. Step 2 (Worksheets). Following the teacher instruction, students were given worksheets designed appropriately according to the topic (see Appendix A). These sheets

The effects of cooperative learning on mathematics


consisted of two or three boxes, each of which included 45 questions parallel to the subjects to be covered throughout the week. Each student worked on a worksheet individually. Each member of the team was asked to answer the questions on his/her own starting with the first box. After finishing answering the questions in the first box, the students compared their answers with other team members. Then, they cross-checked their answers referring to the key of the related box obtained from the teacher. Following this, they continued to answer the questions of the other boxes individually. Each student was expected to answer all of the questions of at least one of the 23 boxes on the work sheet correctly. Those who were not able to do this first asked their teammates for help and, if necessary, then asked their teacher. Step 3 (Checkouts). When a student completed at least one of the 23 boxes on his/her worksheet correctly, he or she could take checkouts. The checkouts consisted of two tests (Checkout A and Checkout B) parallel to each other and including questions related to the topic. Firstly, Checkout A was distributed to the students. Students solved the questions in this test individually, and later the answers were cross-checked by teammates. If a student had a success rate of 80% in Checkout A, a teammate signed the Checkout indicating that that particular student was certified by the team to go on with the final test. Otherwise, the teacher was called for help to assist the student with problem solving. In this case, the student had to take Checkout B, a second test comparable in terms of content and difficulty to Checkout A. Those who had a success rate of 80% in Checkout A skipped Checkout B and went straight to the final test. Step 4 (Final Tests). In the last mathematics class of every week, a final test, including the objectives and behaviors of that week, was administered to students, who took this test individually. Students team achievement was calculated according to the scores they obtained in this test. As a result, a total of five mathematics lessons were delivered in 14 weeks to the TAI groups. These five lessons included 2 h of teacher lecturing per week, an hour of worksheet study, an hour of checkouts, and an hour of a final test. 2.2.2 Student Teams-Achievement Divisions (STAD) The basic components of STAD are as follows: Step 1 (Teacher instruction) During the first lesson, this was done similarly to TAI. Step 2 (Worksheets). During the second lesson, following teaching to the whole class, worksheets related to the topic introduced were given to the students of all teams, two students sharing one worksheet (see Appendix B). That is, two worksheets were given to every team. The worksheets included two columns, each including 56 questions, parallel to each other, and each was allocated for one student. During the pair work, while one student solved the first question of the first box in his/her column by thinking aloud, the other provided support. Later on the pairs changed roles. Therefore, one by one everybody completed the questions in their columns. After all the questions had been completed, the pairs in the teams exchanged worksheets and checked each others work. Then every pair


K. Tarim, F. Akdeniz

was given the answer key by the teacher. If all problems were solved correctly, all team members congratulated each other by holding and raising each others hands. If the pairs did not approve of an answer to a particular question, this question was discussed with another pair of the team. If they still did not reach some agreement, they asked the teacher for help, in which case all the team members raised their hands. The teacher joined the team, that raised their hands and solved the problem together with the students. Step 3 (Teacher instruction). During the third mathematics lesson of the week, the teacher explained the second part of the topic to the whole class in detail. Step 4 (Worksheets). The application of Step 4 was made the same way as in Step 2, on new worksheets concerning the second part of the topic. Step 5 (Final Tests). The topic tests made by TAI were also administered to the STAD group. The same applications were made here as well. As a result, a total of five mathematics lessons were conducted in 14 weeks in the STAD groups. These lessons included 2 h of teacher lecturing per week, 2 h of worksheet study, and 1 h of final test. Team recognition Students in two treatment groups were not evaluated individually but as a team. The team achievement scores were evaluated by individual improvement scores as suggested by Slavin (see Kagan 1992, p. 16:2). A team achievement score is a combination of individual scores, and these scores are based on each students improvement over previous quiz performance (Blosser 1992). 2.2.3 Control During the application in control groups, a traditional method based on whole class teaching was used. In this setting, the teachers were asked to use their own regular instructional method, including unit presentation, individualized practice activities, and quizzes. The teachers in control groups had the same books and curriculum objectives as the teachers in the experimental groups, and they used the explainpractisememorise method, frequently applied in mathematics lessons throughout the world. The method includes explaining the problem, doing the problem, memorising the algorithm, correcting the problem, and testing for correct methods. During the application procedure, sufficiently many problems were solved in line with course objectives, and the stages of problem solving were explained in detail. Meanwhile, the students were given the opportunity to ask questions to clarify the parts that they could not understand. For each question the teacher provided an appropriate solution. Later, a question was written on the board, and all the students were asked to solve that particular problem. While the students were trying to solve the problem, the teacher walked among the students and helped the students make their own corrections. When all the students were through with the problem, a student was called to the board to solve the problem with the help of the teacher. At the end of the lesson, the students were given homework, which was discussed the next day in class. The control group did not participate in any team studies since such an activity was not an essential part of the traditional method. The students of the control group took topic quizzes once every two weeks and were evaluated individually. As in the TAI and STAD groups, also with this group, mathematics was taught for 5 h per week.

The effects of cooperative learning on mathematics


Although all the groups were asked the same types of questions, the way of presentation of such questions was different in terms of methods and application. Similarly, in both the TAI and STAD groups, the same topic tests (final tests) were administered to the students. Yet for the control group topic tests were administered once in every two week period, therefore the same questions were unable to be used, but similar questions were used.

3 Measures An achievement test and an Attitude Towards Mathematics Scale were used as measuring tools for this study. The achievement test was written by the researchers and the attitude scale was developed by Baykul (1990). Mathematics achievement To measure academic success in this study, the researchers developed a mathematics achievement test. The items in this test were determined according to the mathematics topics (sets, arithmetic, fractions, geometry) to be taught in mathematics programs at primary schools for a period of 14 weeks. The items were chosen from mathematics sources/supplementary test books designed for Grade 4 primary school students. Considering the targeted behaviors (mathematics topics: arithmetic, fractions, geometry), four scaled multiple-choice 50 pilot items were developed and incorporated in to the test. These items were studied carefully and approved by four primary school teachers, one curriculum designer, and two mathematics teachers. The test was divided into two parts (Achievement Test A and Achievement Test B), with 25 items in each, and was administered to students in two different sessions. This was done with the belief that the students could easily get bored answering all 50 items at once. The students were asked to answer all the questions in each part, and were allowed 40 50 min to complete the test. For reliability and validity, the test was administered to 342 fifth grade students. The KR-20 reliability coefficient for Form A (169 students) is 0.84 and for Form B (173 students) 0.81. The two forms were given as pre- and posttests to the students. Attitudes towards mathematics In this study, the Attitudes Towards Mathematics Scale, developed by Baykul (1990), was used to measure the students attitudes towards mathematics. The scale consisting of 30 items was built of positive and negative sentences related to mathematics. For instance, Mathematics is an enjoyable lesson, I am interested in everything related to mathematics, I would be happy if mathematics lessons at school are reduced, etc. The items of the scale were graded with the five-item Likert scale: I completely agree, I generally agree, I am undecided, I do not agree, and I completely disagree. The reliability and validity were tested by Baykul. The scale was found to have a Cronbach alfa coefficient of 0.96. According to the factor analysis results, the variance explained with one factor was found to be 56. In terms of single dimensional reliability and validity, the scale can be regarded as sufficient on the Likert type scale. This scale was given to students of the experimental and control groups at the beginning of the study as a pretest and at the end as a posttest. The students answered the scale in approximately 25 min. It was observed that they did not have any difficulty answering the scale since it had no ambiguous items. The score that a student can obtain is between 30 and 150. The higher the score, the more positive the attitude is.


K. Tarim, F. Akdeniz

3.1 Data analysis For the analysis of the data obtained from the Mathematics Achievement Test an Analysis of Variance (ANOVA), a covariance analysis (ANCOVA), and pairwise comparisons were made. Firstly, an ANOVA was used to determine whether the means of the pretest scores of all groups differed significantly. The result of the ANOVA revealed that no significant differences were found between the means of pretest scores. But when the means were taken into consideration, the mean of the control group was approximately 1/3 standard deviation lower than the mean of the TAI group. However, there was a strong linear relationship between the pretest (covariate) and posttest scores (dependent variable). Because of these results, a covariance analysis was applied in order to observe any potential difference between the means of the posttest scores of the groups. A Bonferroni pairwise comparisons test was used to determine the direction of differentiation. As for the analysis of the data obtained from the attitude scale, we investigated whether there were significant differences between the pretest scores of all groups. Since the pretest scores did not have normal distribution, a Kruskal-Wallis test, one of the nonparametric tests, was used in order to determine whether there were any significant differences in the means of the groups. The test result was 2(2)=4.84, p=0.89 and there were no statistically significant differences between the pretest scores. In order to observe any significant differences in the posttest scores a covariance analysis was carried out.

4 Results First of all, with this study we aimed to determine whether there was any significant difference between the means of the achievement and attitude pretests of the students of the TAI, STAD, and control groups. A 31 (TAI vs. STAD vs. control) analysis of variance was conducted on the achievement pretest means for the three groups. The ANOVA results illustrated that there were no significant differences between the means of the achievement pretests of these groups (F (2,245)=2.064, p>0.05, n.s).

Table 2 Means and standard deviations of academic achievement and attitude variables for students by treatment Variables TAI M Academic achievement Pre Post n Pre Post n 26.06 37.42 73 123.41 125.61 60 23.08 21.49 117.45 118.44 68 SD 6.95 7.51 STAD M 25.02 32.29 71 22.31 23.18 121.90 123.65 89 SD 8.58 8.99 Control M 23.55 28.47 104 19.59 22.21 SD 8.80 9.73

Attitudes towards mathematics

The effects of cooperative learning on mathematics


As the attitude pretest scores did not have normal distribution, a nonparametric KruskalWallis test was used in order to determine whether there was a significant difference between the means of the attitude pretest of all groups. The results were 2(2)=4.84, p=0.089, n.s. These values suggest that there was no significant difference between the means of the attitude pretests. The pretest and posttest means for all groups are presented in Table 2. The data for the experiment were analayzed using a 31 (TAI vs. STAD vs. control) analyses of covariance, with the pretest as covariate. Table 3 presents the results of the analysis of covariance, including both the overall (31) results and each of the planned pairwise comparisons. The analysis of the achievement test data indicated significant overall treatment effects, controlling for pretest, F(2,244)=25.643, p=0.000. Regarding academic achievement, students in the TAI groups benefited significantly more than those in the control groups (mean difference: 7.057, p=0.000), as did students in the STAD groups (mean difference: 2.714, p=0.018). Similarly, there were significant differences between the TAI and STAD groups, in favor of TAI (mean difference: 4.343, p=0.000). On the attitude data, neither the overall analysis for covariance, F(2,213)=1.30, p=0.27, n.s., nor the pairwise comparisons showed any treatment effects (see Table 3).

5 Discussion Since the sample is limited to one school with middle-class pupils and to a duration of 14 weeks, any generalization drawn from this study should be considered with caution. The results of the study indicated that the cooperative learning methods STAD and TAI were more effective in terms of academic achievement than the traditional methods. The findings here were rather similar to those of Slavin (1980). In his study, Slavin, analyzed 28 experimental studies in which nine different cooperative learning methods, compared with other methods, were used, and he indicated that in general, cooperative learning was found to be more effective than the other methods on students academic achievement, positive relationships among different ethnic groups, students mutual relations, and students selfesteem. Our findings also support the findings of previous research by Bryant (1981), and Bonoparte (1990).

Table 3 Results of analysis of covariance achievement and attitude measures Measures Academic achievement Overall (Bonferroni) TAI vs STAD TAI vs. Control STADvs.Control Attitude towards Mathematics Overall F 25.64 mean differences 4.340 7.057 2.714 F 1.305 df 2 p 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.018 df 2 p .27 TAI>STAD TAI>Control STAD>Control Direction n.s. Direction


K. Tarim, F. Akdeniz

That cooperative learning methods are more effective is also supported by GilbertMacmillan (1983) who states that cooperative learning gives students an opportunity to talk aloud, to challenge and defend a point of view, and to focus on the problem-solving process rather than the answer. Similarly, Leikin and Zaslavsky (1999) stated that while learning mathematics in certain cooperative learning settings, students often improve their problemsolving abilities, solve more abstract mathematical problems and develop their mathematical understanding. In addition, from a cognitive developmental perspective, the cooperation between students of similar ages with common aims is very important. Adams and Hamm (1990) support this idea as follows: Collaboration between peers clearly helps even very young children to learn how to take different points of view into account. And when children at different development levels work together to explore differences of opinion, they all improve their thinking skills (Piaget 1965). ... When children share a goal, the result of trying to reach it can, because of different perspectives, lead to cognitive conflict. Resolving that conflict leads directly to cognitive development (p. 33). In contrast to what is stated above, during traditional mathematics teaching, the teacher gives explanations, writes problems on the board, asks someone from the class to come to the board, and lets him/her solve the problem. Within this process, cooperation and contribution from other students will be very limited. In this context, the superiority of cooperative learning in this study can be explained with its support to cognitive development. Another strength of TAI and STAD is that evaluation of success can be done in different ways, such as awarding the team that achieved good scores at the end of a final test with an achievement certificate, and sticking the name of the successful team on the billboard and keeping it there for a week. All these activities can also be considered to have some effect on students mathematics achievement in a positive way. From the results of the pairwise test, it can be stated that TAI was more effective than STAD and the traditional methods in terms of improving academic achievement. Effect sizes calculated were d=1.003 for TAI and d=0.403 for STAD. Effect sizes were adjusted to control for small sample bias (Hedges and Olkin 1985). If these effects should be evaluated according to Cohens (1977) interpretations, it can be stated that the STAD method had a moderate effect on academic achievement while TAI had a very high effect. Why were the students in TAI more successful than the ones in STAD? STAD and TAI incorporate concepts of individual accountability, team rewards, and equal opportinities for success, but the approaches differ (Adams and Hamm 1990). Slavin (1988) states that comparing the achievement effects of the various cooperative learning methods, he sees that those incorporating both group goals and individual accountability are considerably more effective than other methods. Where STAD uses a single pace of instruction for the class, TAI combines cooperative learning with individualized instruction. As the TAI method of cooperative learning takes into account both team achievement and individual work, it can be stated that it leads to better outcomes in mathematics classes. In TAI, students first solve the problems individually and then ask for help from their team members. Thus, they are forced to work as a team for an aim to check one another and help one another for their teams success. Furthermore they can only move to the next stage if they solve a certain number of problems correctly. In other words,

The effects of cooperative learning on mathematics


in TAI, students work at their own levels, so, if they lack prerequisite skills they can build a strong foundation before going on. It is very important to build strong bases in order to be able to learn mathematic structures, because if the earlier concepts are not mastered, the later ones might be difficult to learn. Consequently, it can be thought that students from TAI may overcome their shortcomings in prelearning better. In conclusion, TAI could be more successful because it includes a two-stage control process and it also combines group work and individuality. The posttest results of the Mathematics Attitude Scale revealed that there was no significant difference between the three groups with respect to attitudes towards mathematics. All the groups possessed positive attitudes toward mathematics at the begining. After the treatment, the mean of the groups slightly increased, but mean differences between the three groups were insignificant. In the literature, it can be seen that cooperative learning methods have been reported positively in terms of attitudes regarding mathematics (Slavin and Karweit 1985; Bono 1991; Whicker et al. 1997; Vaughan 2002). In his meta-analysis study, Othman (1997) viewed academic achievement and attitudes towards mathematics as independent variables. In this study, where 65 studies were analyzed, it was emphasized that assistance between peer groups had a positive effect on achievement and that, of the entire cooperative learning methods, the TAI method was the one which had the greatest effect on attitudes towards mathematics. In a two-part study of Slavin et al. (1984a), TAI has positive effects on student mathematics achievement and behavioral ratings but in only one study were there positive attitudes toward mathematics. Taking the studies mentioned above into consideration, it might be thought that the results of the present study do not support the literature. However, it is obvious that the attitude scores of the students were not low at the beginning of the study, which may suggest that they already had positive attitudes towards mathematics. Freedman et al. (1987) and Wiggins et al. (1994) state that there is a strong resistance towards a change in attitudes. The fact that we did not observe a significant change in our students attitudes can be attributed to the observation of Freedman et al., and Wiggins et al. Given an extension of time and an intensity of lecturing, there may be observed a change in attitudes of the students involved in this study towards mathematics. However, during the treatment process of informal observations, it was observed that the experimental group completed the in-class assignments willingly and developed a positive attitude towards the methods. Leikin and Zaslavsky (1997) also reported similar observations. They stated that the attitudes towards the methods were more positive in students who received team achievement certificates. In light of this study, it can be suggested that a pilot study be recommended for later studies in order to adapt these methods to the Turkish educational system and make educators aware of potential problems that may occur during the administration of a study. We believe that it is important to conduct a study for a longer period of time in order to be able to determine changes in attitudes. In addition, the same questions might be used for control and experimental groups in order to achieve a better comparison. Also, such a study can be conducted using larger sample groups and schools with different socio-economical levels. It would be of interest to understand the internal dynamics of TAI and STAD. For example, evidence on peer interactions might be obtained from observations or from stimulated recall of cognitive processes in small groups. In addition, the attitudes of students towards cooperative learning methods can be found by means of observations and interviews.


K. Tarim, F. Akdeniz

Appendix A
Table 4
Subject Name

Example of worksheet for TAI

: Problem solving related to the fractions : Date / /

1) How many students equal to 3/10 of 350 students? Answer: 2) Suppose that 7/9 of the apples in the basket are 63. Find the numbers of the all apples in the basket. Anwer: 3) How many grams that satisfy 15 percent of 1 kilogram? Answer: 4) If the person spent 3/5 of 900000. How much money is remained in his pocket? Answer: 5)4/5 of Alis marbels are 80. He gives a half and 5 of his marbels to Omer, calculate the marbels left him? Answer:

1) Calculate the number 3/1000 of 15000. Answer: 2) Calculate the whole number of walnuts, if the 4/5 of them is 60. Answer: 3) If 3/10 of the apples is 15, find the half of the apples. Answer: 4. Assume that the price of each egg is 15000 TL, then how many eggs can Mehmet gets by using 3/8 of his 400000 whole money? Answer: 5. How many spectators are there in the stadium, if 5/1000 of the whole is 50? Answer:

The effects of cooperative learning on mathematics


Appendix B
Table 5 Example of worksheet for STAD
Subject: Problem solving related to the fractions Name : Date :---------1) Calculate the number 3/1000 of 15000 Answer:

Subject: Problem solving related to the fractions Name : Date :---------1) How many students equal to 3/10 of 350 students? Answer:

2) Suppose that 7/9 of the apples in the basket are 63. 2) Calculate the whole number of walnuts, if the 4/5 of Find the numbers of the all apples in the basket. them is 60. Answer: Answer:

3) How many grams that satisfy 15 percent of 1 3) If 3/10 of the apples is 15, find the half of the apples. kilogram. Answer: Answer: 4) If the person spent 3/5 of 900000 TL. How much 4) Assume that the price of each egg is 15000 TL, then money is remained in his pocket? how many eggs can Mehmet gets by using 3/8 of his 400000 whole money? Answer: Answer: 5) 4/5 of Alis marbels are 80. He gives a half and 5 of 5) How many spectators are there in the stadium, if his marbels to Omer, calculate the marbels left him 5/1000 of the whole is 50? Answer: Answer:


K. Tarim, F. Akdeniz

Appendix C
Table 6
Name : No : 1) Which number of 3/9 is 675?

Example of TOPIC EXAM

Date: / / Signature: 6) A rabbit eats approximately 1/4 of his own weight everyday. If it weighs 4 kg, calculate the amount of food must be given to this rabbit.


2) 20 percent of the book is read, which is 1600 pages, determine the page numbers that unread.

7) Find the distance of whole road if 1/4 of the road is 175 km.

3. How many minutes are there 1/6 of an hour?

8) Find the complete mass if 1/6 of it is 751 kg.

4) Which fraction satisfies the 3 times of 17/18?

9) Make the addition of 5 times of fraction of (3 and 2/100).

5. Find the distance covered in 5 and 1/5 an hour if its velocity is 120 km an/hour.

10) The farm contains white and yellow chickens, the number of whites are 1990 and the yellows number just 3 times and 1/5 of the white, find the number of totals.

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