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Homogeneous and Heterogeneous: Weighing the pros and cons.

edf 2005
by

Julie Roberts

on 17 September 2012

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Transcript of Homogeneous and Heterogeneous: Weighing the pros and cons.

Julie Roberts
Edf 2005
Dr.Kushner, Instructor Homogeneous and Heterogeneous Groups: Weighing the Pros and Cons These are groups in which students are paired together based on similarities. Most commonly these similarities are determined by test scores or academic ability. There were a few studies where students were groups by different factor such as sex, race, financial demographics. For my comparative I choose to focus on academics. Homogenous Groups Students feel comfortable. As they are all on the same level, no student feels that they are above or below the academic challenge. Pros Students tended to work together better when they were on the same levels. They were able to work at the same speed and cover more academic material. More time! Yay! Teachers were able to provide more individual attention to students. With all the students learning at the same pace, it provided the teacher more time to focus on different groups or individuals.There was lesss students who were behind or ahead of the class to interrupt the lesson plan or its speed. Cons These are groups composed of a mixture of students on different academic levels. Heterogeneous Groups Pros students are exposed to different levels of academics. One of the high demands for mixed groups is that the exposure of higher level students to lower is that they will motivate the student to do better. Peer Education: By pairing students of different abilities it allows students to help each other. Where a student may not grasp a lesson given by the instructor, they may have more insight when shown by a peer in the group. No in's or out's: with students mixed together on different levels the class is not separated by academic scales were some students feel left out. Cons Too blended in: Whereas some students appreciate the mixture of the class, other students no longer feel special. They may either be at the gifted level and no longer feel they are academically excelling above classmates. Or students who need extra assistance get lost among the rest of the class. Maybe there is an I in TEAM?!? Within the mixture of students rather than the advanced student assumes all the tasks for the group, rather than the influencing other students to do better or take part. Social influences come in play as the students on the lower levels may feel less adequate and just leave the work for the "smarter" students. Or the "smarter" students may be singled out negatively for their achievements and this affects the distribution of work and learning. Less time! Boo! With students learning the same lesson but at different levels the groups is running at different pacing. This causes students to either be ahead or behind. Teachers have to take time to try and bring students to the same speed. The mixture and the shuffling back and forth causing both the students and teachers to get frustrated. Students may feel they are not getting the instructions needed from the teacher. As well as the teacher feel students are simply not getting the information. Bibliography:
Adodo S.O. and Agbayewa J.O. Effect of homogeneous and heterogeneous ablility grouping class teaching on student's interest, attitude, and achievement in integrated science. International Journal of Psychology and Counseling.Vol.3(3) (March 2011)pp.45-54. http://www.academicjournals.org/ijpc/PDF/Pdf2011/March/Adodo%20and%20Agbavewa.pdf
Jan Adams-Byers, Sara Squiller Whitsell, and Sidney M. Moon. Gifted Students' Perception of the Academic And Social/Emotional Effects of Homogeneous and Hetergeneous Grouping. Gifted Child Quarterly Winter 2004 48: 7-20, doi:10.1177/0016986104800102
Johnson, Ben. Student Learning Groups: Homogeneous or Heterogeneous? www.edutopia.org/blog/student-grouping-homogeneous-heterogeneous-ben-johnson
Knopp, Shannon. Which type of student grouping, heterorgenous or homogenous, promotes higher student achievement? Appalachian State University. http://www.appstate.edu/~koppenharverd/rcoe/s10/5710/q1/groupShannon.pdf
Schussler, Shannon. Assigning Group Work without Group Skills. Huffington Post TEEN. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lilli-schussler/assigning-group-work-with b 1479169.html Lack varied social interaction. When students are on the same level or working at the same speed there is less need for them to interact with each other and get the assignment finished. Same 'ole thing...
Without the different types of students or varied challenges presented by working in mixed groups some students get bored. The lessons become routine or the relationships developed with working with same students becomes boring. My recommendations:
After reviewing the research and testimonies
of both teachers and students I would recommend using homogeneous for beginning class sessions or students you don't have much experience with until you have a feel for what works best for students.
Another creative suggestion was to split students up randomly by birthdays or favorite colors. That way no student feels left out or singled out.
You could also use this different types of groups for different types of activities. Like using homogenous groups for history or reading assignments and pairing students up heterogeneously for math or science. This gives a variations between each setting to see what works best for the entire class, including the teacher!
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