Friday, May 15, 2009

A Discussion on Collaborative Technologies

Collaborative technologies do not merely provide venues for students to work together, they provide instructors the opportunities to teach from a project-based or problem-based perspective. Curricular work that would normally be completed in a classroom can now be extended beyond the walls of the classroom.

  • Collaborative technologies, such as Google Groups, Google Documents, Google Notebooks and Google Sites, allow students to develop and explore team dynamics.
  • The technologies allow students to learn both in and outside of the traditional class and begin to emulate work teams found in business and industry.
  • Creating a history of contributions, the technologies provide evidence for both instructor and student of the development of the project, individual contributions, and the group process.
  • As students collaborate, their perspective on both their abilities and the abilities of others should increase. They will begin to develop critical thinking skills, evaluating digital information for example.
Characteristics of collaborative technologies:
  • Focus on group, team
  • Provide platform for shared space, creating focused deliverables
  • Provide real world exposure to collaboration, group dynamics, and team dynamics
  • For faculty, provide broader and deeper teaching opportunity
  • For students, provide growth opportunities, exposure to diverse view points
Collaborative technologies, teaching and learning
  • Developing, exploring
  • Pedagogical impact on focus on time on task, meeting high expectations, integration, and diverse ways of learning, interpersonal and intrapersonal skills
  • Outcomes include develop sense of equality, fairness, accomplishment

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