Cooperative Competitive and Individualistic Teaching Styles in the Classroom

Cooperative, competitive, and individualistic teaching styles in the classroom have different impacts on students. Students learn in a variety of ways, and these three teaching styles vary the way a student will learn. This article will discuss cooperative, competitive, and individualistic teaching styles in the classroom.

Cooperative Teaching

Cooperative teaching styles in the classroom are noted by their group mentalities. This type of teaching style causes students to work in a team setting. This is called cooperative teaching because students must work together to achieve desired results (Johnson & Johnson, 1999). Cooperative teaching emphasizes the success of the group. Students will use their skills and abilities to work towards a common goal. Cooperative teaching requires students to do their best because they all will have to put their name on the finished assignment. Cooperative teaching in the classroom is beneficial because it causes students to be responsible for their learning. Students are responsible to themselves and other students when cooperative teaching styles are being used, and this causes them to be more successful (Johnson & Johnson, 1999).

Competitive Teaching

Competitive teaching is a fun way to bring about learning in the classroom. This type of teaching can be thrilling, but it is not always beneficial. The problem with competitive teaching is that not all of the students will experience a chance to succeed. In competitive teaching, students work against each other instead of together (Johnson & Johnson, 1999). This can cause some kids to excel, but it will cause some kids to give up or lose enthusiasm as well. This teaching style is beneficial in some areas but not overall. Competitive teaching in the classroom can cause learning in some students, but as a group the classroom does not truly benefit.

Individualistic Teaching

This type of teaching style has many benefits as well as downfalls. Individualistic teaching requires students to work independently to achieve their goals. This type of classroom teaching inspires responsibility in students because their success depends on them alone (Johnson & Johnson, 1999). Although responsibility and discipline are learned through individualistic teaching styles; this teaching style can also cause students to focus only on themselves which is not always beneficial.

There are many types of teaching styles that causes students in the classroom to learn differently. Competitive teaching inspires competition and does not provide every student in the classroom with the opportunity for success. Individualistic teaching promotes discipline and responsibility, but it lacks group pride and success. Cooperative teaching is the most effective method of teaching students in the classroom because everyone learns and succeeds as a group.


Johnson, D. W., & Johnson, R. T. (1999). Learning together and alone: Cooperative, competitive, and individualistic learning. Retrieved from