Group activities should be engaging and focus on higher order learning
- What aspects of the content lend themselves to group activities?
- How can the activity utilize the many experiences of students into making a higher quality product than working individually?
- How can the activity allow students to work together to maximize their own and each other’s learning?
- How can the activity allow students to search for understanding, solutions, or meanings, or creating a product?
- How does the activity meet a course objective? Do your learning objectives for the course including working as a team? Working collaboratively?
- What are the goals of the group activity?
- Is the activity too challenging for an individual to complete?
Group activities should facilitate learning community
- How can the activity allow for group discussion and resolution (if possible)?
- How can the activity be structured to ensure participation by all members?
- How can the activity provide an opportunity for students to develop a connection with each other?
- How does the activity promote peer teaching/learning?
Group activities require student support in self-management
- What activities will you include for students to build trust and cohesion (e.g., group charter, team pictures, team blog, etc.)?
- What is the timetable for completion? Have you taken into account time dependent on the medium (discussion board, synchronous meetings, etc.)?
- Are the tasks scaffolded into manageable chunks? Is there frequent feedback opportunities?
- What technologies will be used? (Asynchronous Discussions? Drop box? Locker? Synchronous Chat? Others?)
Group activities require individual and group accountability
- How will accountability be built into the process?
- Is individual and group performance assessed (e.g., peer evaluation, group grade on product)?
- Is reflection built into the activity (self-assessment)?
This content was adapted from Week 3 of Pivoting to Online Teaching: Research and Practitioner Perspectives and Module 2 of the Effective Online Teaching Short Course by J. T. Dellinger, and is used under a CC BY-NC 4.0 license. Modifications include adjusted text for UTA context.