Analyzing equity in collaborative learning situations: A comparative case study in elementary computer science

Niral Shah, Colleen Lewis, Roxane Caires

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


This paper presents a comparative case study of the different ways that equity and inequity emerged as an elementary computer science student collaborated with two different classmates on programming tasks. Data collected include audio recordings of students' interactions, field notes, written assessments, and students' digital work. Using a mixed methods approach, quantitative patterns were identified in the distribution and content of student talk at multiple grain-sizes, which were analyzed in conjunction with pivotal sequences of interaction. Findings indicate that despite the existence of participation structures designed to foster equitable collaboration, inequities emerged in both dyads as students positioned themselves and their classmates with identities as more or less competent in computer science. While in the first dyad this positioning was often overt, in the second dyad positioning assumed a more passive form. Further, there is evidence that these positionings had an impact on students' opportunities to learn.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)495-502
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of International Conference of the Learning Sciences, ICLS
Issue numberJanuary
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes
Event11th International Conference of the Learning Sciences: Learning and Becoming in Practice, ICLS 2014 - Boulder, United States
Duration: Jun 23 2014Jun 27 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)
  • Education


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