The pros and cons of student team projects.

Team project cartoon

Cartoon created by Phil Jones and Visual Artist/Illustrator, Ron Martin (

As the saying goes, “There’s no, ‘I’,  in the word team”. No there isn’t, but there can be an ‘F’, ‘D’, ‘C’, ‘B’ or an ‘A’.

One of the biggest complaints from students regarding team projects, is that there always seems to be a ‘slacker’ within their midst; a student that ‘rides the coat tails’ of other team members efforts, and ends up with the same mark as everyone else for contributing little or nothing. If this is happening in any of your courses, then you need to change how you set up the team project so there’s a way to identify who did or didn’t do the work. If you don’t, then frankly, you deserve the flack [Read more…]

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Group work in class: How to ‘deal’ with it.

Playing cards are great for 'shuffling' groups.

If you want to shuffle students into groups for in-class activites (or even projects), shuffle the deck! Depending on the size of the class and the size of the groups that you want, use a deck of playing cards to determine the groups. Let’s assume you want to set up groups of four students per group.  [Read more…]

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