Well, we’re almost a quarter of the way through Spring 2014 semester! Time is fllllyin! And in regards to my classes….that means midterms are around the corner, and FINALS not far after that! WOAH! No matter how much I am dying for summer, I hate to rush away the rest of the semester.
In almost all of my classes this semester, my term project has already been assigned and there is a commonality between each project. I’m working in a group for each one! To be honest, I’ve always had a slight fear of group projects….I’m very much a control freak and would rather take on a whole project myself, especially one that’s being graded. I knew a semester like this would be coming and now its finally here.
But I can’t get myself too worried because there are so many benefits to working in a group. Of course you hear the horror stories of a single student doing an entire project the night before its due, because his group flaked out. That’s an exception! There are many positive aspects to working in a group for a project. For example, you don’t have to take on as much work. In a good group, every member is doing an equal amount of work so that no one is too stressed out. Also, you tend to learn more because you’re able to discuss the topics with your other group members! Most importantly, its a great excuse to make some new friends!
Here are three tips to remember when you work on a group project this semester, or a semester in the future!
1. Set up a form of communication
Communication is NECESSARY to complete a group project successfully. Luckily, we live in an age where you can communicate anywhere, anytime. Make sure you get the phone numbers of each of your group members so that you’re able to text them to set up meeting times. Another great way to communicate is through Google Docs and Google Drive. Google offers an area where you and your group members can all edit and work on a document. It’s a great place for making notes and throwing around ideas.
2. Be open to everyone’s ideas
For the shyer type, a group project can be very daunting. Some students would rather sit in the back of class, take notes from the professor, and go home after that, not making a peep the whole time. It’s important to introduce everyone in the group to establish a level of comfort. If you’re more of a confident person, be the one to begin introductions. Then ask around if anyone has ideas for the said project. Try not to make faces, roll your eyes or laugh at someone’s idea. To them it may be the best they have! Each idea is something to build and jump off of.
3. Establish who’s doing what
Like I mentioned before, there are sometimes horror stories of one student doing a whole group project themselves. This isn’t the point of group projects, and professors would hate to hear this. By giving tasks to each group member, setting due dates, and discussing as a group each persons role, you’ll most likely have a more successful project in the end. Most often, professors have a student rating system that they give at the end of the project. If you feel like one student didn’t fairly do their part, this is where you voice your concerns.
I wish you the best of luck on your projects throughout the semester!