ON DEMAND: Using “Carrots and Sticks” to Promote Student Collaboration and Enhance the Team Experience


  • Elaine Viccora




We know that collaboration deepens learning, produces better outcomes, and results in fewer headaches for students and professors alike. However, students typically view group assignments as a chance to “divide and conquer;” they work independently before coming together to assemble their individual efforts into a patchwork project, often lacking cohesion.

Did you know that professors have the ability to foster collaborative learning by using a combination of carrots (team-building activities) and “sticks” (accountability measures)? We teach “Developing Your Professional Skills I and II,” required classes designed to help students advance their teamwork skills through a variety of group assignments. After teaching these courses for four years, we realize the unique power we have as instructors to both encourage and require that students take steps toward collaboration, boosting the team experience.

During this video, we will showcase the strategies we’ve used in our classes and provide tips based on our lessons learned. For the “carrots,” we will explain how/when you may want to use team-building activities and offer a menu of suitable activities (e.g., discussion prompts, sharing activities, fun collaborative tasks, games, and shout-outs) that can be used in both the online and face-to-face environments. Regarding the “sticks,” we will share our accountability model and provide examples on how it can be used to expand student interest in creating positive team experiences.

Author Biography

Elaine Viccora

School of Business





2021 On Demand Pre-recorded Presentation