DoingCL - Think-Pair-Square






Think-Pair-Square is similar to Think-Pair-Share. Students first discuss problem-solving strategies in pairs and then in groups of fours. Since problem solving strategies can be complicated, this structure may be more appropriate with experienced collaborative groups.

The instructor poses a problem. Problems that have a "right" answer work more effectively in this structure though open-ended problems also work. Students are given time to think about the question and then form groups of four. Two pairs of two students gather, each pair working to solve the problem. They then re-assemble as four and compare answers and methodologies.

The think-pair-square structure gives students the opportunity to discuss their ideas and provides a means for them to see other problem solving methodologies. If one student pair is unable to solve the problem, the other student pair can often explain their answer and methodology. Finally, if the problem posed does not have a "right" answer, the two student pairs can combine their results and generate a more comprehensive answer.

Millis, B. J., and Cottell, P. G., Jr. (1998). Cooperative learning for higher education faculty, American Council on Education, Series on Higher Education. The Oryx Press, Phoenix, AZ.

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