Collaborative Learning


Collaborative learning is an active learning strategy in which two or more students work together on specified project to achieve a common goal. Each group member may work individually on an assigned topic in addition to collaborating with the fellow group members to complete other shared tasks to meet common requirements. Instructional technologies enhance the ability of student groups to collaborate and share and publish work.

Instructional Uses:

  • Assign a collaborative writing assignment in which students outline the task and then write and edit sections individually or as a whole group.
  • Assign a group presentation in which group members need to research and present on a course topic, marketing strategy, product proposal, etc.
  • Create study groups in which students meet in person or via Zoom in order to review for major course assessments.

WCU Supported Tools:

Tips for using Collaborative Learning:

  • Set up groups in D2L so that students can submit assignments on behalf of the entire group.
  • Designate time within the weekly workload or class time for students to discuss and collaborate on the group assignment. Building in that time increases the chance that students will work closer together on each assignment task as opposed to splitting up all assignment tasks. When doing so, students benefit from working with and learning from each other (Scager et al., 2016).
  • Introduce students to WCU supported tools that make collaboration and communication more effective, such as OneDrive and Zoom.
  • Implement mini due dates for major group assignments to keep students and groups on track and accountable to each other.
  • Research-Based Practices: Zoom for Faculty
  • Research-Based Practices: Zoom for Students


Scager, K., Boonstra, J., Peeters, T., Vulperhorst, J., & Wiegant, F. (2016). Collaborative Learning in Higher Education: Evoking Positive Interdependence. CBE Life Sciences Education, 15(4), ar69.