Jun 2015

BY sanmitadev
POSTED INEngagement, Students
5 Strategies for Promoting More Student Collaboration

collaborationOne of the most fundamental skills college students must learn is that of collaboration. Students who collaborate with others – whether their professors or their peers – will develop the ability to learn from others, share thoughts and ideas and become innovators. This will serve them very well in whatever career path they happen to choose. So, how can higher education leaders foster and develop this important skill? To follow are 5 strategies that will get results.

Create a Collaborative Environment – Make it easy and efficient for your students to connect and collaborate by creating an environment that facilitates these things. Leverage things like cloud technology and social networks to keep students engaged with staff and each other.

Provide Team Opportunities – While today’s higher education students must learn how to manage their own workload and schedules, it’s also essential that they learn the importance of working with others as a team. Provide opportunities to connect and collaborate within the classroom as well as outside through group projects.

Develop a Culture of Acceptance – One of the main reasons people in general feel uneasy about speaking up and sharing their ideas with others is the fear of being ridiculed or chastised. Create an atmosphere where open, honest communication is encouraged and make it clear that all thoughts and opinions are welcome and respected.

Make it Fun – Collaborating with others – whether in a classroom or business setting – doesn’t have to be stiff and boring. To the contrary, the most dynamic and successful collaborators are those who are able to relax and look at the lighter side of things. Encourage your higher education students to do the same by getting to know one another and have a little fun at the same time.

Recognize, Reward and Celebrate Success – When you see collaboration working well within your classroom or amongst different teams, take the time to recognize that and reward it. You may even wish to incorporate collaboration as part of the overall grading process to give students something to strive toward and be able to celebrate once they’ve achieved their goal.

The ability to connect and collaborate with others is something that will serve your student body well into the future, both in their personal and professional lives. Set them up for success by implementing these five simple strategies.

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