Research indicates that cooperative learning (CL) has the potential to increase accounting student satisfaction without impairing the learning of technical material (Lancaster, K., & Strand, C. (2001). Using the team-learning model in a managerial accounting class: An experiment in cooperative learning. Issues in Accounting Education, 16(4), 549–567). This study investigates whether instruc- tor-formed heterogeneous groups produce a more effective CL environment than student self- selected groups by measuring individual academic performance and perceptions. Results indicate the presence of a treatment interaction, implying that the best group composition may not be the same for all students. In some circumstances, higher ability students had statistically higher perfor- mance in more homogeneous groups. Lower ability students did better (not significant) in heteroge- neous groupings. The majority of students gave high ratings to the impact of CL on learning and development of team skills. Students were only mildly interested in increasing the time spent in groups, indicating that they value both traditional teaching methods and CL.

Document Type


Publication Date


Publisher Statement

Copyright © 2007, ScienceDirect.