Research Group on Peer Learning (GRAI, by its acronym in Catalan), formed by both university researchers and compulsory education teachers, is dedicated to research and teacher training with the aim of helping to introduce peer learning within the common methodological practices in a sustainable way.
- Project design and teacher training
With this objective, we design educational projects –such as Reading in pairs or (En)Raonem en parella– in the form of programmes –set of materials and guidelines to be put into practice, properly adjusted to the schools’ realities.
All of these programmes –which you may get to know in the other sections of the website– have publications and possess three features:
- They are open. They are not a set of immovable prescriptions that must be “applied”, but open projects that require teachers’ knowledge to be adjusted to the schools’ contexts and needs.
- They are developed in the form of Research and Development (R&D). We propose evidence-based innovations and along with the teachers involved we also collect data on the effectiveness of the programme, in order to improve the proposals.
- Peer Learning Network (XAI, by its acronym in Catalan). Although we give lectures, organise training sessions, provide advice… on peer learning, GRAI’s preferential form of training is XAI. From the school’s commitment, when implementing the programme in the classroom we offer training to a pair of teachers per school for three years. Each year, the pair is replaced by a new one, so that after three years at least six teachers master peer learning, making innovation sustainable.
XAI coherently combines peer learning at three levels:
- Among students: fostering peer tutoring and making students learn thanks to their differences.
- Among teachers: making pairs of the same school, who learn from each other putting the innovation into practice together.
- Among schools: through meetings gathering pairs of teachers from different schools, support in a virtual classroom and mutual visits.
In these years, we have designed multiple programmes and we have given support to over 300 schools so that they implement peer learning, while collecting evidence on effectiveness, in order to improve and sustain practices so that they stop being innovations and become usual actions in schools.
- Research on peer learning
Part of the research carried out by GRAI is developed in collaboration with schools and teachers that implement educational programmes we design. Therefore, in the publications section you will find articles –both research and outreach papers.
In addition to collecting the impact of different educational programmes, we also investigate through complementary projects and we formulate theoretical frameworks to explain them, such as the concept aprensenyar (a neologism that combines to learn and to teach in one word to say Learning by teaching).
The research results, besides publications in the form of articles, chapters and books, are often made available to the community in the form of lectures, participation in seminars and conferences. You can find information in the news section.
From GRAI we maintain collaboration with other groups and researchers from around the world, who are interested in the topic, especially in Europe and Latin America, with whom we write articles and books, as a result of joint work.