Why and how to support students in team assignments

Judith Stevenson

Session Information

Year: 2016 | Time: 11:20am-12:00pm | Location: Innovation Hall (Room 334)


Once employed, our graduates will be judged on their ability to be effective team players. In some professions, people’s safety and even survival may depend on good teamwork. Yet teamwork assignments in university courses are not generally a popular option. Team projects are often viewed as a difficult and frustrating requirement, by students and faculty alike. Few instructors receive any formal training on how to create effective team assignments or on ways to educate their students about strategies for success in their team activities. 

In this session, we discuss ways to educate students about the value of team experiences in their courses, so that they are motivated to improve their teamwork skills. We examine the dynamics of both face-to-face and virtual teamwork, in workplace environments and in a college setting, so as to understand the underlying reasons for the challenges inherent in team activities. Then finally we explore some techniques that instructors can use to design and deliver team assignments that support a positive student experience.  


collaborative learning; active learning; experiential learning; digital tools; teaching online

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