SHOWCASE: Managing Groups in Online Environments (90 mins)


  • Gabriele Belle
  • Victoria Grady
  • Karen King
  • Katie Rosenbusch
  • Raven Russell
  • Ashley Yuckenberg



Managing groups in any learning environment requires careful planning to ensure that students feel included, develop important career-ready teamwork skills, and learn course subject content. In part one of this session, a panel of instructors from across disciplines will briefly share their team-based assignments and general strategies for assigning groups, managing group conflicts, grading group work, and providing groups feedback. In part two of this session, participants will experience an online group activity in which each group produces a slide in a shared document gallery that contains list of questions and strategies/tips for managing groups in online environments. In part three, speakers and participants engage in a discussion facilitated by the convener. Participants will be able to describe 3-8 strategies for managing groups in an online environment that they can apply to their courses.

Conveners: Faisal Mahmud, Ala Showers

Panelist Speakers:
Gabriele Belle (College of Science) will share how she uses Blackboard to create synchronous and asynchronous spaces for groups in a way that supports group autonomy while offering “just in time” instructor support.

Victoria Grady (School of Business) will share her favorite “kick off” activities to facilitate student engagement and a semester of dialogue.

Karen King (School of Business) and Ashley Yuckenberg (School of Business) will share how they use minor assignments and a team charter activity to support team formation and buy-in before the teams move on to summative assessment papers and presentations. These team-building assignments allow for group alignment and support the creation of a workflow among the teams that result in more balanced assignment outcomes.

Katie Rosenbusch (School of Business) will share how she modifies her strategies for online vs. face-to-face (with special consideration for COVID-19 protocols) and some of her favorite group activities like a virtual escape room.

Raven Russell (Volgenau School of Engineering) will share strategies compiled by the Discipline-Based Education Research (DBER-STEM) discussion group at Mason.

Nick Tatum (College of Humanities and Social Sciences) will share his strategies for using shared documents to support real time group learning support tasks, which facilitate his ability to monitor student progress, and improve student learning experience by streamlining the technology logistics of collaborative work.





2021 TUESDAY 10:00am-11:30am