Group and Teams in the Classroom

Faculty Focus has a great report available for download titled, “Student Collaboration in the Online Classroom.” There are a lot of good resources on creating a collaborative classroom environment. Dr. Teshia Young Roby wrote an article highlighting “17 Tips for Successfully Including Peer Collaboration in an Online Course.” The article is based on data collected in a survey conducted within the University System of Georgia exploring examples of peer collaboration exercises in online classes.

  • Get rid of preconceptions.
  • Adapt and adopt existing collaborative exercises.
  • Begin with a manageable amount of collaboration.
  • Consider a course orientation.
  • Make the collaboration a stated course outcome.
  • Teach students how to collaborate.
  • Provide structure for and require deliverables from the students.
  • Organize the student groups early and stabilize the groups throughout the course.
  • Create groups of 3 to 5 students.
  • Instruct groups to report large problems.
  • Provide feedback often.
  • Carefully choose discussion topics.
  • Prepare in advance for chat room discussions.
  • Organize the discussion board for productive discourse.
  • Constantly facilitate and monitor online collaboration.
  • Promote peer collaborations through grading.
  • Receive student feedback on collaboration exercises.

Tips for Encouraging Student Participation in Classroom Discussions