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The purpose of this study is to determine the effect of Student Teams-Achievement Divisions (STAD) model of cooperative learning method on students’ chemistry achievement. The study will be experimental research in which pre-test -post-test design with control group will apply. The study will be conduct at Sekolah Menegah Kebangsaan USJ 23, Subang Jaya with 40 pupils. In this study, experiment and control groups will be use. STAD model of Cooperative Learning method will be apply to the experiment group and Traditional Teaching method will be apply to the control group. Before applying the measure means will given to groups as pre-test. In the end of applying is practice post-test to groups. Conclusions will be show that there is a significant difference between the results of experiment and control groups. STAD model of cooperative learning method is more effective than traditional teaching methods.

Effective science teaching is the gateway to attainment of scientific and technological greatness. Science and chemistry teaching can only be effective when students are willing and the teacher makes use of appropriate methods and resources in teaching the students. Modern science teaching and learning stress student’s participation in the learning process through exposure to diverse learning experiences (Baikie 2000). The learning of chemistry on the part of the learner depends on the way it is presented and the way he actively interacts with the learning experiences presented to him. With the current explosion in scientific knowledge, much demand is placed on both the teachers and learners in the whole process of teaching and learning of science. The job of a teacher is to impart knowledge into the students such that they acquire desirable skills, abilities, knowledge and other competencies, which would help them in their later life. To achieve this, the teacher should be well versed in their teaching subjects and be ready to teach within the level of their students. Onwuakpa and Nweke (2000) in their contribution advised that science teachers in general and chemistry teachers in particular should give assignments, projects and tests to their students and discuss the results of these with them. This is because knowledge of student’s performance in tests and assignments helps to identify their areas of weakness and strength.

The quality of education that teachers provide to student is highly dependent upon what teachers do in the classroom. Thus, in preparing the students of today to become successful individuals of tomorrow, chemistry teachers need to ensure that their teaching is effective. Teachers should have the knowledge of how students learn chemistry and how best to teach. Changing the way we teach and what we teach in chemistry is a continuing professional concern. Efforts should be taken now to direct the presentation of chemistry and lessons away from the traditional methods to a more student centered approach.

The science curriculum for secondary school has been designed as to provide students with the knowledge and skills in science, develop thinking skills and strategies to enable them to solve problems and make decisions in everyday life (Ministry of Education Malaysia, 2002).The science curriculum as well as other subjects in the secondary school curriculum also seek to inculcate noble values and love for the nation. Despite good intentions and directions, teacher centered teaching practices still take centre stage.

Cooperative learning is a comprehensive approach to teaching that derives from a theory of education and encompasses key assumptions about what students should learn and how they learn (Duke, 1990). Lessons in the cooperative learning strategy are arranged so that each student, ranging from the fastest to the slowest learner, has a contribution to make (Sapon-Shevin and Schniedewind, 1990). Because the students, in this approach, tutor one another, they are likely to acquire greater mastery of the material than in the common individual study with recitation pattern. Furthermore, the shared responsibility and interaction are likely to generate better inter group relations, and result in better self-images for students with histories of poor achievement (Joyce and Weil, 1980).

There are several models of cooperative learning that vary considerably from each other (Slavin, 1995), for examples in STAD (Student Teams-Achievement Divisions), students are grouped according to mixed ability, sex and ethnicity. The teachers present materials in the same way they always have, and then students work within their groups to make sure all of them mastered the content. Finally, all students take individual quizzes. Students earn team points based on how well they scored on the quiz compared to past performance.

Statement Of Research Problem

Effective teachers generate the greatest opportunity for students to learn and technically manage instruction but teaching methods that allow students to use hands, eyes, ears and the mind also enhance effective learning and students’ achievement. Cooperative learning enables students to help one another to learn in small groups. However, grouping students and telling them to work together does not, in itself, produce cooperation and higher achievement because some students seek a so-called ‘free ride’ on others, while high ability students may take over in ways that benefit themselves at the expense of the lower achievers (Johnson and Johnson, 1990). Pressure to conform may also suppress individual efforts. For cooperative group work to benefit students, they should trust one another, communicate effectively, accept and support one another, and resolve conflicts constructively (Johnson and Johnson, 1990). Hence, need to determine how STAD model of cooperative learning method improves students’ learning and achievement in chemistry.

Objective of Study

To investigate how STAD model of Cooperative Learning method affected students’ learning and achievement in chemistry.

To ascertain whether the cognitive achievement of students taught through Cooperative Learning was statistically different from that of students taught through traditional teaching methods.

Research Question

This research will be design as a mean to answer the questions on:

1.3.1 How STAD model of Cooperative Learning method affected students’ achievement in chemistry?

Is it the cognitive achievement of students taught through Cooperative Learning was statistically different from that of students taught through traditional teaching methods?

Purpose of Study

The purpose of this study is to indicate the effect learning together of Cooperative Learning method on students’ achievement in chemistry. This study also to ascertain whether the cognitive achievement of students taught through Cooperative Learning was statistically different from that of students taught through traditional teaching methods.

Significant Of Study

This study is apparently the first attempt to study the effect STAD model of Cooperative Learning method on students’ learning and achievement in chemistry. This study will be providing information about the difference on learning methods towards students’ learning and achievement. The results of this research will provide information to the students and teachers which method is more effective to students get good result in their chemistry.

Limitation Of Study

One of the key elements for successful cooperative learning is developing the ability of students to use social and small group skills such as conflict management (Lancaster and Strand 2001). Tools that can help students deal systematically with conflicts can enhance group interaction in cooperative learning in several ways. Unfortunately conflicts can occur among team members for different reasons; some of these conflicts may come from some team members not putting their share into the effort.

Definition Of Term

Cooperative Learning

Cooperative learning is a form of active learning where students work together to perform specific tasks in a small group.

STAD model

STAD is a cooperative learning method for mixed-ability groupings involving team recognition and group responsibility for individual learning.


Achievement is the act of achieving or performing; an obtaining by exertion; successful performance; accomplishment; as, the achievement of his object


2.0 Introduction

The challenge in education today is to effectively teach students of diverse ability and differing rates of learning. Teachers are expect to teach in a way that enables pupils to learn science concept while acquiring process skills, positive attitudes and values and problem solving skills. A variety of teaching strategies have been advocated for use in science classroom, ranging from teacher-centered approach to more students-centered ones. In the last decade, there is a vast amount of research done on cooperative learning in science. Cooperative learning is grounded in the belief that learning is most effective when students are actively involved in sharing ideas and work cooperatively to complete academic tasks. Cooperative learning has been used as both an instructional method and as a learning tool at various levels of education and in various subject areas.

2.1 Definition of Cooperative Learning

Educators offer various models for effective teaching. One of these is the cooperative learning method, which was proposed by Slavin (1995). Cooperative learning is defined as a learning approach in which students form small mixed groups in the classroom environment and help each other to learn an academic subject with a common aim, and group success is usually rewarded in differing ways (Johnson & Johnson 1999; Gömleksiz, 1997; Kagan 1994; Slavin, 1995, 1996).

According Duke (1990), cooperative learning is a comprehensive approach to teaching that derives from a theory of education and encompasses key assumptions about what students should learn and how they learn. Cooperative learning also is a mode of learning in which students of different levels of ability work together in small groups to achieve a purpose (Akinbobola, 2006). It involves the use of a variety of learning activities to improve their understanding of a subject (Slavin, 1992).

Johnson & Johnson (1999) and Lin (2006) argue that the aim of cooperative learning is to improve students’ social and communicative skills, to increase their tolerance, and to raise their academic achievement. It has been proved in all the research into cooperative learning that cooperative learning makes innumerable contributions to learning outcomes (Güvenç & Açıkgöz, 2007)

Shimazoe and Aldrich (2010) provides several benefits on the use of cooperative learning approach for students. First, cooperative learning promotes deep learning of materials. Second, students achieve better grades in cooperative learning compared to competitive or individual learning. Third, students learn social skills and civic values. Fourth, students learn higher-order, critical thinking skills. Fifth, cooperative learning promotes personal growth. Finally, students develop positive attitudes toward autonomous learning.

In Malaysia, research on cooperative learning has been carried out since 1990s (Nor Azizah & Chong, 2000). The revised curriculum of the primary and secondary schools emphasized the use of cooperative learning as an alternative to traditional method of teaching. (Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia, 2001). Cooperative learning is generally understood as learning that takes place in small groups where students share ideas and work collaboratively to complete a given task.

There are also some techniques that are used in establishing students the cooperative learning method. Some techniques are as follows: “Learning Together & Alone (LTA)” technique developed by Johnson and Johnson (1990), “Student Teams Achievement Divisions (STAD)” technique developed by Slavin (1990), “Team Accelerated Instruction (TAI)” technique, developed by Slavin and Associates, “Teams-Games-Tournaments (TGT)” technique developed by De Vries and Slavin, “Jigsaw Technique” developed by Aronson et al., and “Group Investigation” technique developed by Sharan and Sharan (Johnson, Johnson, & Stanne, 2000). Palincsar and Herrenkohl (2002) discuss the general situations for cooperative learning as “reciprocal teaching” and “cognitive tools and intellectual roles-CTIR”.

2.1.1 Cooperative Learning in Classroom

Over the last thirty years a great deal of research has been done on cooperative learning in the classroom. An examination of the literature on cooperative learning strategies supports the usefulness of these strategies to improve student performance for almost any desired educational outcome. For example, research has shown that well structured cooperative learning techniques in the classroom improve academic achievement, race relations, gender relations, self esteem, liking of class and student attendance (Johnson & Johnson,1987; Newman & Thompson,1987; Sharan,1980; Slaving 1980, 1982, 1990, 1995; Stahl & VanSicle, 1992). According to Slavin (1982),student seem to enjoy classrooms that employ these techniques.

According to Newman and Thompson (1987) and Slavin (1995), most of the research on cooperative learning has taken place at the elementary level, even though cooperative learning techniques were developed initially for college and adult education (Palmer & Johnson, 1989). Few studies have been conducted at the secondary level and even less research has been initiated in the upper secondary social studies class. Therefore, there is a need to study cooperative learning strategies in the upper secondary classroom.

Lessons in the cooperative learning strategy are arranged so that each student, ranging from the fastest to the slowest learner, has a contribution to make (Sapon-Shevin and Schniedewind, 1990). Because the students, in this approach, tutor one another, they are likely to acquire greater mastery of the material than in the common individual study with recitation pattern. Furthermore, the shared responsibility and interaction are likely to generate better intergroup relations, and result in better self-images for students with histories of poor achievement (Joyce and Weil, 1980).

A great deal of research at the level of higher education has made it clear that through cooperative learning, students displayed such behaviours as higher academic achievement, reasoning, critical thinking, less disturbing behaviours, lower anxiety and stress, higher self esteem, forming positive and supporting relations between friends, developing objective self evaluation skills in the process of learning, and exhibiting positive attitudes towards topics (Johnson, Johnson & Smith, 1991; Johnson & Johnson, 2000; Quarstein & Petrson, 2001).

Students in a group interact with each other, share ideas and information, seek additional information, make decisions about their findings to the entire class (Kort, 1992). Cooperative learning created many learning opportunities that do not typically occur in traditional classrooms. According to Nor Azizah (1996), cooperative learning has the potential in science classroom because of the following factors: (a) science students always work in group during science experiment in the laboratory therefore what they need is the skill to work in group (b) science laboratory is spacious with intact desk and chairs. (c) science classes are usually two periods with 40 minutes each, enough time for cooperative learning and (d) during experiment many values can be inculcated e.g cleanliness, trustworthy etc.

There are also disadvantages of cooperative learning. One of them is “having something all at your fingertips” effect. When responsibility for the group is undertaken by one or only a few people, others may participate in their success. Members of the group may also ignore their responsibilities or display low success. In the event of this, the hardworking members may decrease their efforts, thinking that they are being exploited (Slavin, 1999: 74). “The growing richer of the rich” is a condition in which the better students take more benefit of the work done by the roles they have undertaken. While the student who “knows” learns better, the student who “doesn’t know” that much may worsen. In “interference of the responsibility” condition, the more hardworking students do not rate the suggestions and explanations of others and ignore them. While well-structured groups are successful, badly-structured groups become unsuccessful (Johnson & Johnson, 1990). The students who do not have enough self confidence may also experience difficulty in belonging to the group. More talented students may feign less ability. There is a risk that the time is diluted as the responsibility is shared. The group may resist learning, and there may be destructive discussions.

2.1.2 Cooperative Learning in Chemistry Achievement

In the 1981 study in which Johnson, Maruyama, Johnson, Nelson and Skon reviewed 122 researches that analyzed the relationship between cooperative learning and academic success, they found out that cooperative learning had more positive results in the subject area teaching of every age group than both the “competitive learning” and the “individual learning” method (Johnson & Johnson, 1999). Slavin (1983) states in a study, in which he analyzed 46 researches, that when the cooperative learning method were compared with competitive and individual learning methods, it had positive results significant as related to academic success in 63% of the researches.

The chemistry syllabus encouraged small group teaching and teaching through experiments and projects and although curriculum developers wanted chemistry taught through these learner-based approaches, its teaching in secondary schools remained largely expository (KIE, 1992; Kiboss,1997; Mullei, 1987).

Apart from chemistry achievement, attitude is also a major focus in cooperative learning study. A study conducted by Ifamuyiwa and Akinsola (2008) found that students in the experimental group showed a positive attitude towards chemistry. Similarly, Brush (1997), also found that students in the experimental group showed positive attitudes towards chemistry. However, a study by Tarim and Akdeniz (2008) found no significant difference was observed regarding students’ attitude towards chemistry.

Siti Rahayah (1998) further stated that science teachers need to try cooperative learning in order to enhance scientific skills and to increase achievement in science.

Definition of STAD model

In incorporating cooperative learning strategies into the classroom curriculum, two factors have been found to contribute to positive achievement effects: group goals and individual accountability (Slavin, 1996). Group goals are necessary to motivate students to help each other learn by giving them a stake in one another’s success. Individual accountability, in turn, deters the likelihood that one or two group members will do all the work. If the group’s success depends on the individual learning of each group member, then group members are more motivated to engage every member in mastering the material being studied.

The Student Teams Achievement Divisions (STAD), developed by Robert Slavin and his colleagues at Johns Hopkins University, is perhaps the simplest and most straightforward of the cooperative learning approaches (Arends, 1997). In STAD, students within a given class are assigned to four- or five member learning teams, each of which has representatives of both sexes, various racial or ethnic groups, and high, average, and low achievers. After the teacher has introduced the academic material, team members use worksheets to master the academic materials and then help each other learn the material through tutoring, quizzing one another, or carrying on team discussions. The students also receive worksheet answer sheets, emphasizing the importance of learning the concepts rather than simply filling out the worksheets. Following team practices, students individually take quizzes on the material they have been studying. These quizzes are scored, and each individual is given an improvement score. This improvement score is based on the degree to which the score exceeds a student’s past averages, rather than on a student’s absolute score. Weekly newsletters announce teams with the highest scores and students who have exceeded their own past records by the largest amounts or who have perfect scores on the quizzes.