Is Studying 1-to-1 Pairwork?

(Last Updated On: 9th January 2009)

Does studying 1-to-1 qualify as pairwork? And is it necessarily teacher-centered and bad? Anyone?

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Stacey

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  • You mean, studying 1-to-1 is necessarily teacher-centered and bad or studying 1-to-1 qualified as pairwork is necessarily teacher-centered and bad? 🙂
    But don’t tell me that YOU think that 1-to-1 teaching is bad.

  • 😉 I guess I have been reading too much lately. Collaborative learning is a buzz word in e-learning. They keep saying that studying in a group is better than studying on your own, so I wonder where studying 1-to-1 fits in this paradigm. I am all for tutored self-study, but it is not independent self-study, there are two people. And my logic tells me that it is a variety of pairwork, where one of the conversation partners is more knowledgeable. The bad news is that I can’t find any nice quote to support my view 🙁

  • I couldn’t agree more, but still I presume that studying 1-to-1 is not pair work. On the one hand, a teacher is more skilful, and, on the other hand, a teacher is not a peer. What I am trying to say is that his/her function is rather to keep track of student’s progress than to be a partner. If you run after two hares, you will catch neither. All the same, it is the best mode of study provided it is not totally on-line.

  • As for what your teacher’s function is, it all depends on your cultural learning style (expectations and ideas as to what it is the teacher should or should not do – I wrote about cultural learning styles here http://www.englishlab.net/teflblog/2008/11/what-learning-styles-are-there/ ), the subject matter of what you are studying, and the methodology. There are quite a few approaches, methods and techniques out there that provide for student-centered teaching.
    What I am personally pondering now is the scope of the term “pairwork”. The thing is that pairwork is part of 1-to-1 teaching, but 1-to-1 teaching is not limited to it. Perhaps that’s what I ought to consider the starting point in my quest for more knowledge 🙂

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