LESSONS FROM GROUP WORK ACTIVITIES: A STUDENT PERSPECTIVE
Group work as a learning strategy is gaining currency in tertiary education. The reasons for group learning and assessment vary. They range from the need for students to develop skills such as cooperative learning, peer collaboration, team spirit and interpersonal communication, to the need for educators to use strategies that enable them to cope with teaching and assessing large classes. This paper evaluates group work from the students’ perspective, with focus on the lessons that students learn from group activities. A total of 100 final year undergraduate students from various disciplines at the University of Botswana participated in the study. Data was collected using a questionnaire and interviews. Insights were drawn from the sociocultural theory and social constructivism theory in order to explore students’ perception of the merits and demerits of group work. The paper also highlights outstanding moments of students’ experiences during group work activities. Finally, suggestions on how group work could be efficiently utilized as an effective learning strategy in the tertiary classroom are made.