Dave and Roger Johnson feel that repeated affirmative acknowledgment during collaboration, the heart of positive interdependence, promotes secure feelings, generates a liking for teammates, and consequently a desire to complete tasks with them. A critical element in group work is being accepted with reinforcing statements that your contributions are valued. It follows then that working in a non-threatening environment allows for maximum assimilation of content and enhances motivation. Experiencing that success activates the secretion of more dopamine in the nucleus accumbens, elevating the attentive focus needed to complete the assigned task.
Assertive leadership and cooperative settings are novel, and the consequential biochemical effect is two-fold: amplify cognition and develop confidence in the capacity to engage everyone in friendly social discourse.
Johnson, R., Johnson, D., (2009). An Educational Psychology Success Story: Social Interdependence Theory and Cooperative Learning, Educational Researcher 38 (5): 366–367.
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