Title: Designing an effective web-based environment for collaboration and teamwork

Authors: Catherine McLoughlin

Addresses: School of Education ACT, Australian Catholic University Ltd, PO Box 256, Dickson, ACT 2602, Australia

Abstract: Conceptual models of how technology and teamwork can be effectively integrated are sparse and the question of how to support team skills online is an emerging area of research and practice. Utilising online groups to support the development of collaboration is dependent on interrelationships between the task and nature of collaboration, participants and features of the networked environment. The case study presented here shows that the design of supports for team processes is essential for the development of effective online collaboration. This paper identifies essential team dynamics and reports on how design features support these processes in a tertiary level-programming course. The research found that several processes - planning time, allocating responsibility, supporting members, stating progress, and completing the task - assisted learning partnerships and could be incorporated into the online environment. The research proposes that additional learning supports are needed for authentic online learning environments to foster team skills.

Keywords: collaborative learning; instructional design; teamwork; authentic learning; scaffolding.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCEELL.2002.002140

International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning, 2002 Vol.12 No.5/6, pp.371-388

Published online: 21 Jul 2003 *

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