Accountability for Project-Based Collaborative Learning

Jamal Abu Hussain, Mohammad Essawi, Oleg Tilchin


One perspective model for the creation of the learning environment and engendering students’ thinking development is the Project-Based Collaborative Learning (PBCL) model. This model organizes learning by collaborative performance of various projects. In this paper we describe an approach to enhancing the PBCL model through the creation of result-based accountability. Enhancing the model results in organizing PBCL as a two-phase process creation of accountability for the students and their learning results, with specific formation of a knowledge heterogeneous collaborative group, and the design of a learning assessment system. The teacher is accountable for teaching the subject through a sample project realized during the first phase of the process. Collaborative performance through group projects is realized in the second phase of PBCL. Student accountability for performance of determined project tasks is created on the basis of self-assessment of knowledge. A collaborative group is formed as a result of the coordination of personal accountabilities of students, taking into account teacher requirements providing students’ shared accountability in performance of a group project. The learning assessment system includes: the initial formative assessments when studying a subject according to knowledge levels, inducing the building of higher-order knowledge; self-assessment that allows student accountability for learning outcomes; assessment knowledge built by students, owing to collaborative project performance; assessments when studying a subject; assessments of collaborative skills and accountability skills, and combined summative assessments. The approach promotes the collaborative building of knowledge, facilitation of knowledge sharing among students, and effective construction of higher-order thinking skills, collaborative skills, and accountability skills.


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International Journal of Higher Education
ISSN 1927-6044 (Print) ISSN 1927-6052 (Online) Email:

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