Enhancing young students' high-level talk by using cooperative learning within Success for All lessons

M. A. Veldman*, S. Doolaard, T. A. B. Snijders, R. J. Bosker

*Corresponding author for this work

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This study examined whether students achieved high-level talk during group work because of involvement in cooperative learning within the Success for All (SfA) program. SfA is a comprehensive school program in which cooperative learning plays a key role, in addition to several other components such as parental involvement and tutoring. A quasi-experimental design with a treatment and a control group was used. At the end of the school year, grade-1 students (6- and 7-years-old children) executed a group task in small groups of four students. At that moment, SfA students had experienced cooperative learning within SfA lessons for a whole school year. In total, 160 students participated in this study. Using a coding scheme the quality of student's talk during group work was compared between treatment and control group. Compared to the control group, SfA students showed more high-level talk. SfA students expressed more extended elaborations of propositions and asked more open elaboration questions. Hence, the results of this study suggest that cooperative learning activities within SfA-lessons contributed to students' high-level talk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)82-97
Number of pages16
JournalPedagogische studien
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - May-2019


  • cooperative learning
  • high-level talk
  • Success for All
  • primary education

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