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Resources for Effective Teaching

Topic:  Guiding Students to Work Effectively in Groups and Teams

General information:
Evidence suggests that people learn more when working with others (on effectively designed problems) than by themselves. It is up to the instructor to be knowledgeable of how to assign and direct group work effectively so that learning can be maximized. This page is designed as a resource to help you gain the knowledge you need to effectively lead students to work in groups or teams.

Links to OSET Resource Pages:
Learning Studio Classrooms at UNM: Designed for effective group work, this classroom acts as a catalyst for active learning in groups and teams.

Guidelines for Maximizing Learning in Groups: A 4 page guide on how to manage setting up and using student groups to enhance learning. Also included are templates for team member evaluations.

Getting Student Buy-In for Active Learning and Groupwork: This PDF contains background information and activities to bring into your class to get students to buy-in to active learning and groupwork in order to meet course objectives. The document includes First Day Questions that are particularly powerful for getting students to buy-in to active and collaborative learning on the first day of class.

Workshops Related to this Topic (check the OSET events calendar for upcoming offerings):
Effective Classroom Teaching and Learning with Student Groups


Description: FacNet logo_small.jpg
FacNet Resources – UNM faculty who are happy to help in this area:
UNM faculty have volunteered to offer one-on-one advice about guiding students to work effectively in groups/teams and will welcome you to watch them in their classrooms.  Contact OSET and we will make arrangements for you to meet.

Click here if you would like to volunteer your expertise to colleagues by joining FacNet.


Links to Useful Resources Outside UNM:
Collaborative Learning Group Work and Study Teams:  This paper outline strategies for designing, organizing, and evaluating group work; University of California, Berkeley.

Turning Student Groups into Teams: This paper is a guide to the effective design and management of team assignments in a college classroom including forming teams, helping them become effective, and using peer rating to adjust for individual performance.

Forms for Cooperative Learning: This document, prepared by Richard Felder and Rebecca Brent at North Carolina State University, includes helpful forms including: student survey that you use to make teams, team contracts, peer ratings.

Assessment in and of Collaborative Learning: This webpage hosts a variety of links from grading in collaborative classrooms to making group work count; Washington Center’s Evaluation committee. 

Team Based Learning: Find video resources about what TBL is, student and faculty opinions, and access to the Team-Based Learning book.

Group Work in the College Classroom: Instructors and students share their experiences in videos and Carl Wieman explains what the research suggests for best practices in implementing group activities; Carl Wieman Science Education Initiative at the University of British Columbia.

Case Studies: Links to Merlot Elixr video resources of faculty guiding students to work effectively in groups.

Problem Solver- Group Projects Aren’t Working: Solve a Teaching Problem is used to identify a problem, come up with possible reasons from the existing problem, and formulate strategies to solve the problem; Carnegie Mellon.

Essays on Teaching Excellence published by the Professional and Oganizational Development Network in Higher Education (POD):

Helping Students Help Each Other: Making Peer Feedback More Valuable. Linda Nilson, Clemson University. 2002-2003.

Cooperative Learning: May the Circle Be Unbroken. Barbara J. Millis, United States Air Force Academy. 2000-2001.

Foundations of Collaboration. Gail Muir, California State Polytechnic University at Pomona; Sally Blake, University of Texas at El Paso. 1999-2000.

Keys to Using Learning Groups Effectively. Larry Michaelsen, University of Oklahoma.1997-1998.

Collaborative Learning: Reframing the Classroom. Jean MacGregor, Washington Center for Improving the Quality of Undergraduate Eduation, Evergreen State College. 1990-1991.