Online Classes and Group Projects
posted March 28, 2015 9:09 AM
Many bloggers on this site, myself included, have written about how group projects and teamwork are the bedrock of many SLIS courses. But what if you are taking a class online? Does that change? Not at all. Online students do just as much group work as face-to-face students, except sometimes they have to get more creative to accomplish their goals and finish projects.
This semester I am taking Metadata (LIS-445OL) online. A good friend of mine took it in person with the same professor in the fall. After the class got started, I showed him the syllabus and asked if he saw any major differences between the work for the face-to-face class and the work for the online one. He said the professor used different examples for some exercises, but that all the assignments and modules were the same, and I was happy to hear this.
At the beginning of the semester, I worked with my group to compare our individual work against each other's. This ensured we were all taking away the same lessons from class. Now that we're more than halfway through, we recently did a presentation together on a niche metadata standard called PBCore. Normally we would have met in person and divided up the work, but since we have group members who do not live locally in Boston, we used forums on Moodle (SLIS's online learning platform), Google Docs, Google Slides, and e-mail to communicate and share documents. This is my first online class, and I was surprised that presentation we handed in was just as good as any I've done in other groups for on-campus classes. This also says a lot of about my group though. I'm really grateful that the members dropped what they were doing when a new piece of communication about the project came through. It was a tough week of work, but well worth it.