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Grant Awarded for Learning Study

A professor at Cal State Dominguez Hills in Carson has been awarded a three-year, $177,000 grant to study cooperative learning among college students, a method that previous studies have found beneficial for younger students, especially minorities.

James Cooper, a professor of graduate education, recently was awarded the grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education, which is administered through the U.S. Department of Education, university officials said.

Cooper said the grant will fund continued study of cooperative learning, which places students in small groups and stresses dependence on one another as well as individual accountability for assignments. The focus of classroom learning is shifted from the teacher to the student.

Cooper said studies of students in cooperative learning classes, from kindergarten through the 12th grade, indicate that they have a better self-image than other students and tend to be more tolerant of people with a different gender or ethnic background. In addition, Cooper said, research indicated that minority students benefit the most from the cooperative approach.

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