Evaluation of cooperative learning in large ESL classes at a Pakistani university
This dataset represents the final evaluation of an action research project carried out at the University of Sindh Jamshoro Pakistan, described in more detail in Panhwar and Bell (2022).
Over a period of a semester, a large compulsory English as a second language class in the Institute of English Language and Literature (IELL) was delivered using cooperative learning instead of the more usual lecture style. The pedagogical approach was monitored and adapted throughout the semester, using a cyclical process of action research. The aim was to improve student engagement.
The first five lessons were used to orient the students to the methods of cooperative learning and participatory action research. There were then 18 intervention lessons using cooperative learning. At the end of the semester, there was a final evaluation which included the following three elements:
A student questionnaire, circulated in the final class.
This consisted of 31 statements about working in cooperative groups; students were asked to indicate their level of agreement with each statement on a scale of 1-5 where 1= strongly agree, 2= agree, 3= neither agree nor disagree, 4= disagree and 5= strongly disagree. There were also three open-ended questions to generate qualitative feedback.
83 copies were returned, of which 75 were included in the analysis after exclusion of invalid returns (e.g. incomplete, the same rating used throughout, or multiple ratings per question).
Classroom observation forms, completed by IELL lecturers with 2-16 years experience of teaching English language.
The form consisted of 25 questions about the teacher’s and students’ behaviour. Observers were asked to indicate whether each behaviour was observed, partly observed, observed only a little, or not observed at all. There were also spaces for qualitative comments, both in relation to specific questions and overall.
Observation forms were completed for 17 of the 18 intervention lessons, six from live observation and 11 from video recordings, by 16 different teachers (one person observed twice).
Semi-structured interviews with four student groups (two all-male groups and two all-female groups) selected through systematic sampling.
The interviews were conducted by the teacher-researcher over a period of three days after the last lesson. All groups opted to answer in English.
The dataset consists of 17 files, as follows:
The information sheet enabling students to give informed consent to the study
The questionnaire administered to students in the final class
Collated qualitative comments from the student questionnaires
All quantitative responses to the student questionnaire in wide format, one column per statement and one row per student. Note that only statement numbers and numerical ratings are shown on this document; it is necessary to cross-reference with the questionnaire or quantitative summary documents (described below) to see the text of the statements and values of the responses.
The distribution of responses for each statement on the student questionnaire
Graphical representation of responses for each statement on the student questionnaire
The form completed by teacher-observers of the lessons
Collated qualitative comments from the observation forms. For comments related to specific questions, the number of the relevant question is given in parentheses.
All quantitative ratings on the observation form in wide format, one column per question and one row per lesson observed. Note that only question numbers and numerical ratings are shown on this document; it is necessary to cross-reference with the observation form or quantitative summary documents (described below) to see the text of the questions and values of the responses.
The distribution of responses for each question on the observation form
Graphical representation of responses for each question on the observation form
Questions used to structure the student group interviews
Transcribed excerpts from the respective interviews. The interviews were not transcribed verbatim in their entirety, but the transcribed extracts are intended to represent the response of each student to each of the main questions discussed.
Collated qualitative comments from all four interviews, grouped according to topic
Panhwar, Abdul Hameed & Melanie J. Bell. 2022. Enhancing student engagement in large ESL classes at a Pakistani university. Educational Action Research.