Cooperative learning: Classroom based teacher support through action research.

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)

First Supervisor/Advisor

Dr. Jane Rarieya

Second Supervisor/Advisor

Ruth Otieno


Institute for Educational Development, East Africa


World initiatives on education, such as, Education for All (EFA) (Jomtien, 1990) and the Millennium Declaration and the Dakar Framework for Action (Dakar, 2000) have led to increased access to basic education in many countries the world over. Access to education has been addressed through elimination of lees or reduction of education costs. In Kenya. the re-introduction of Free Primary Education (FPE) has seen an increase in school enrolment, rising from 5.9 million pupils in the year 2000 to 7.6 million pupils in the year 2006. This has led to the emergence of large classes in most public primary schools against a backdrop of inadequate physical resources and teacher's unpreparedness to handle large classes. 1The brunt of large classes has been borne by classroom teachers whose teaching and learning practices can no longer meet the needs of large number of students. This study explores how a primary school teacher can be supported to use co-operative learning strategy through classroom based action research. Qualitative methods of data collection which included interviews, observation, document analysis and reflective conversations were used to explore factors that influence the teacher's uptake of cooperative learning, suitable models for a large class context and the role of the teacher educator in classroom based action research.

Findings reveal that the teacher's uptake of the c0-operative learning strategy are dependent on her ability to follow instructions and procedures clearly and communicate the same to students. the curriculum in use in the school, availability of time and induction to the strategy among others. The findings further reveal that the teacher educator has a multifaceted role in the study context: expert. supportive companion and reflective coach. Based on the study findings, recommendations are made on the use of co-operative learning in large classes.

This document is available in the relevant AKU library