Although group work helps to foster transferable skills such as collaboration and negotiation, it is often negatively perceived by students as a challenge, especially when confronted with less participatory members that make take advantage of their partners’ work –i.e. social loafing. Much research has focused on how to reduce such a problem and how to actually make group work succeed not only in terms of outcomes but also in terms of learning experience (e.g. Frash et al., 2004; Voyles et al., 2015; among many others). In this interactive seminar on innovative teaching, I will be sharing my own experience on group work formation with a group of 62 university students training to be future teachers, whose normal academic life was interrupted and reshaped from March to June because of the pandemics. To this end, I will describe how group formation was arranged by means of an adapted version of Belbin’s (2010) role questionnaire, how it developed and had to adapt given the Covid-19 situation and finally, what results were gathered from the students’ responses to the surveys they had to fill in after the experience took place. This will allow us to answer key questions like: does group work actually work –i.e. does it lead to successful academic outcomes and a satisfying learning experience? Do students perceive it in a positive light? What can students do when in-group conflict arises? Finally, how did the Covid-19 pandemics affected group work?
Register here for this event.
Zoom link will be provided before the time of the event to all registered participants.
This talk is part of the Postdoc Seminar in Innovative Teaching, which seeks to explore strategies, techniques and approaches to innovate in higher education contexts. Namely organised by addressed to predoc and postdoc RCC fellows at Harvard, this seminar intents to boost the exchange of ideas among young scholars with an interest in innovative teaching and learning.
Speaker: Carmen Maíz-Arévalo. Associate Professor, Department of English Studies: Linguistics & Literature; Director of the Complutense Centre for Modern Languages (CSIM); Complutense University of Madrid.
Sponsor: RCC; Postdocs@RCC