Group project drags down A+, raises D student
Date sent: Thu, 17 Dec 1998 09:59:34 -0500
Send reply to: Unikorn
Subject: [education-consumers] [Fwd: Re: Self-esteem in Public Education]
A little more on group learning: It has been my experience when groups
are formed without consideration for the student's abilities that those of
a lesser academic level take advantage of those of a higher academic
level. In one instance, my daughter's 8th science class, (she now attends
Notre Dame), was given the group project of building a solar car. She
and another girl, both excellent students, ended up doing all the work.
When it was time for the group to meet, only my daughter and the other
good student showed up. Those who were considered "c" students EXPECTED
the smart ones to do all the work. There was no "learning experience" or
"teaching by peers." The less academically inclined students saw a way
out of doing work.
More importantly is the end result: The two A+ students had their
grades dragged down by the group experience to a B, since their work was
handed in late--because no one else in the group bothered to get any of it
done. The "c" students who had not participated in the project were given
a "B" for their group grade--raising their averages. Then the school has
the nerve to claim that this little experiment works because it showed
students were learning equally, after all they received equal grades.
Utter balderdash. This is just more of the self esteem movement's effort
to make students APPEAR equal--rather than to admit that there are good,
average, and bad students. Heaven forbid if that truth ever got out!