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Making Group Work Engaging
Co-facilitated by Academic Technology Services and the Library, this session will expose you to techniques and best practices for designing group work that will engage students. In addition to exploring the proven benefits of group work, we will discuss how to tackle some of the common problems and view examples of unique and successful group assignments.
Please come prepared with an assignment of yours (group or individual) for a session activity.
Tuesday, December 16: 12:30-1:30 or 1:30-2:30
Collaboration: A Vital 21st Century Skill
- Positive group experiences contribute to student learning, retention and overall college success.
(Astin, 1997; Tinto, 1998; National Survey of Student Engagement, 2006)
- Group projects can help students develop skills that are important in the professional world.
(Caruso & Woolley, 2008; Mannix & Neale, 2005)
Benefits of Group Work
Properly structured, group projects can reinforce skills, including the ability to:
- Break complex tasks into parts and steps
- Plan and manage time
- Refine understanding through discussion and explanation (peer to peer teaching)
- Give and receive feedback on performance
- Challenge assumptions
- Develop stronger communication skills
Group projects can also help students develop skills specific to collaborative efforts, allowing students to...
- Tackle more complex problems than they could on their own.
- Delegate roles and responsibilities.
- Share diverse perspectives.
- Pool knowledge and skills.
- Hold one another (and be held) accountable.
- Receive social support and encouragement to take risks.
- Develop new approaches to resolving differences.
- Establish a shared identity with other group members.
- Find effective peers to emulate.
- Develop their own voice and perspectives in relation to peers.