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Working with groups


  • Team Peer Evaluation Examples (pdf)
    This document was created to provide you with a source of options for gathering data on teamwork assignments and projects. You may choose to adopt one of the examples as is, combine elements from several of the examples, or use the examples to identify characteristics that correspond to particular aspects of your assigned work, course content, or student population.
  • Puzzled About Teams (pdf)
    This handbook has been developed as a resource for you. Separately, each piece focuses on a specific aspect of collaboration. Taken as a whole, the pieces can help you develop the collaborative skills you will need to succeed in the academic, professional and social worlds. You can begin by looking at the introduction and reading each section, or tailor the handbook to your individual needs by heading straight to a specific area.
  • Commonly asked questions about teaching collaborative activities (pdf)
    Answers to how to divide students into groups, deal with conflict, grading, and much more.
  • Building blocks for teams Opens in new window
    Penn State’s Teaching and Learning with Technology Opens in new window website offers tips to both instructors and students Opens in new window on how to build effective teams and utilize a variety of Penn State technology services Opens in new window to get the most out of your team-learning experience.
  • Managing groups to promote thinking and writing Opens in new window
    Dr. Jessica OíHare from the Penn State’s Center for Excellence in Writing Opens in new window has provided this handout during her “Tea Topic” discussion group on Managing groups to promote thinking and writing. Topics in this handout include setting up groups, keeping them focused, and examples of types of group assignments.
  • Penn State Teacher II (pdf) , pages 54-67
    "Teaching with Collaborative Activities and Small Groups" provides advice on working in groups, as well as personal reflections of Penn State staff and students on group learning activities.
  • iStudy Modules for teams and groups
    These have been designed to work from within ANGEL. Modules import quickly and easily Opens in new window into existing ANGEL courses and groups.
  • Rubrics, Penn State Video Taping Services Opens in new window, and Podcasting at Penn State Opens in new window
    Providing grading rubrics to students early in the group-work process is a good way to clarify your expectations of the group’s final product. If the groupís final product is a presentation, instructors can utilize Penn Stateís video taping services or the Podcasting Initiative as ways to share examples of satisfactory and exemplary work from previous classes.
  • Team-based learning Opens in new window
    This site includes articles by Dr. Larry Michaelsen on working with groups and creating effective group assignments.
  • Assessing learning in Australian universities - Assessing group work Opens in new window
    This resource for instructors includes how to design group activities that work, how to assess an individualís contribution to a group project, and how to incorporate peer and self-evaluations into assessments. This work is published by The Centre for the Study of Higher Education, and is part of their Five Practical Guides Opens in new window series on assessment.



Additional readings

  • Bruffee, K.A. (1994). Collaborative learning: Higher education, interdependence, and the authority of knowledge. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press.
  • Bosworth, K., and Hamilton, S.J. (1994). Collaborative Learning: Underlying Processes and Effective Techniques. New Directions for Teaching and Learning, 59, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
  • Cramer, S.F. (1994). Assessing effectiveness in the collaborative classroom. In Bosworth and Hamilton, eds. Collaborative Learning: Underlying Processes and Effective Techniques. New Directions for Teaching and Learning, 59, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
  • Michealson, L.K. (1983). Team Learning in Large Classes. In Bouton and Garth, eds. Learning in groups. New Directions for Teaching and Learning, 14, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.