Postsecondary Peer Cooperative Learning Groups Annotated Bibliography (Updated September 1, 2018)

Postsecondary Peer Cooperative Learning Programs: Annotated Bibliography by David R. Arendale is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.  Based on a work at

Background on the Bibliography

For many years, I have maintained an annotated bibliography of publications about peer learning programs at the postsecondary/tertiary level. I share it in several forms:  PDF, Word, and EndNote database. Please observe the license under which it is made available for your use. Links to topic versions of the bibliography are at the bottom of this page. The unabridged version of the bibliography is now 488 pages composed of nearly 1,500 annotated references.

This annotated bibliography does not attempt to be inclusive of all literature concerning peer collaborative learning. Instead, it is focused intentionally on a subset of the educational practice that shares a common focus with increasing student persistence towards graduation and several other criteria listed in the paragraph below.

The seven student peer learning programs included in this bibliography meet the following characteristics: (a) the program must have been implemented at the postsecondary/tertiary level; (b) the program has a clear set of systematic procedures for its implementation that could be replicated by another institution; (c) program evaluation studies have been conducted and are available for review; (d) the program intentionally embeds learning strategy practice along with review of the academic content material; (e) the program outcomes include increased content knowledge, higher final course grades, higher pass rates, and higher college persistence rates; and (f) the program has been replicated at another institution with similar positive student outcomes. From a review of the professional literature, seven programs emerged: (a) Accelerated Learning Groups (ALGs), (b) Emerging Scholars Program (ESP), (c) Peer Assisted Learning (PAL), (d) Peer-Led Team Learning (PLTL), (e) Structured Learning Assistance (SLA), (f) Supplemental Instruction (SI), and (g) Video-based Supplemental Instruction (VSI).  As will be described in the following narrative, some of the programs share common history and seek to improve upon previous practices.Other programs were developed independently.

Versions of the Bibliography for Downloading

Click on this link to download the bibliography as a PDF format document(Updated September 1, 2018). This version will always be months behind the current database. If you want the most recent database, download the EndNote database file below and you can create your own custom print version of the latest citations. It how now grown to be 488 pages and over a quarter-million words.

Click on this link to download the bibliography as a Word document which you can easily edit (Updated September 1, 2018). Using Microsoft Word software makes it easy to edit the bibliography as you like and use the search engine to find key words of your own choice. Length of the document is 488 pages.

Click on this link to download the actual database file of the bibliography in the EndNote format(Updated September 1, 2018). This file has been "compressed" and will require "unzipping" to open and use with EndNote bibliographic software.  Click on the above web link and "save" the file to your computer If you are unsure how to import into EndNote, talk with someone who knows or search for the answer through Google and YouTube.  Use of this database requires purchase of the EndNote software or importing into another citation reference manager. There are other free citation management systems such as Zotario.

Click on one of the two links below to download the Directory of Keywords I created to code the database and make it easier to search through EndNote: [Word document version]  [PDF format version]  (Updated September 1, 2018) While you can search the bibliography by keywords within the titles or abstract, many of my additional keywords added to the database entry will not appear within the text. Using EndNote's search function along with this list of the keywords I used to index it will allow more productive searchers. It would be easy to create custom bibliographies as needed.  For example, "SI" plus "science" plus "academic achievement" would create a custom bibliography of every SI research document that included data for improved academic achievement of participating students.

Separate Bibliographies by each Program

The following bibliographies are separated by each of the different peer learning programs. Each are provided in Word format.

Subject Area Bibliographies

The following bibliographies are based on one of the keywords used to label the individual citations. These are based on the September 1, 2018 version. It would be best to download the Endnote data file and use the keyword guide to create your own custom bibliographies. I am using these with a series of manuscripts I prepared with my colleagues Amanda Hane and Brian Fredrickson. The following are in Rich Texture Format (RTF) which you can open with most word processors including Microsoft Word.

Academic Content Bibliographies for SI Only (September 1, 2018)

There is overlap since some publications contain multiple research studies in different content areas

Updating the Bibliography

Errors and omissions are my responsibility. If you have citations that should be in the next version of the bibliography, please send me the citation and also the document as well.  David Arendale,