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The Consolidation of Responsibility in the Mixed-Age College Classroom
Teaching Sociology (2002)
  • Jay R. Howard, Butler University
  • George H. James III
  • David R. Taylor
The article presents a study that examined the nature of student participation in the mixed-age college classroom. For the purposes of the study, students in an undergraduate social science research methods course were trained in non- participant observation techniques. Eight courses were selected for observation. Four sessions of each of the eight courses were observed by a single observer in the first six weeks of the semester. Each instance of students' verbal participation was also recorded. By recording the number of interactions contributed by each student, the researchers were able to identify students who accepted the consolidation of responsibility for participation in classroom discussion. Observers also kept qualitative notes regarding interaction in the classroom. Finally, students and instructors in the observed courses were surveyed in the tenth and eleventh weeks of the semester. The participation of non-traditional students significantly exceeded the participation of traditional students.

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Jay R. Howard, George H. James III and David R. Taylor. "The Consolidation of Responsibility in the Mixed-Age College Classroom" Teaching Sociology Vol. 30 Iss. 2 (2002)
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