Refining group work

I had a very productive phone chat today with Simon Housego from the Institute for Interactive Media & Learning at UTS. I want to integrate SPARK into student assessment. SPARK facilitates not only  student peer assessment, but also self-assessment. This subject has a group work assignment. It was trialled first time last Spring. it was moderately successful (not as successful as the individual component of the assignment). Simon suggested I peruse the IML guide on group work at the IML web site. It has proven highly valuable. The site gives you the lowdown on topics such as designing group work, preparing students for the experience, helping them form into effective groups, monitoring their progress, etc. I confess my ignorance on group work organisation before reading the guidelines. Many things I took for granted need some meditation! However, looking back to last Spring, I think I at least chose the best (least contentious) way of getting students to form into groups without being overbearing: I got them to choose research topic first and then matched them to research groups that way. Of course that is just the beginning. To find out more, read this:

http://www.iml.uts.edu.au/learn-teach/groupwork/

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