Collaborative Learning Seminar
The Collaborative Learning Seminar is a series of four sessions that explore small group learning activities and the instructional methods and technologies that support them. Working in groups, participants experience various cooperative interactions and support each other’s exploration of collaborative learning. By the end of the seminar, each participant will have designed a collaborative learning activity linked to learning objectives that will be ready to run with students or show to colleagues.
For those enrolled in the Teaching Development Program (TDP), this seminar satisfies the Advanced Track seminar requirement.
How to join this seminar
This seminar last ran in Fall 2019. To be alerted to when we will offer it again, join the CTL email list.
Columbia University graduate students and postdocs who are interested in…
- Connecting group learning assignments to priorities and skills pertinent to their academic discipline
- Deepening their awareness of resources, models, and tools supporting collaborative learning
- Developing a fully conceptualized group learning assignment, including a strategic assessment plan
Group learning activities and projects can be deeply rewarding for students, but only if they are carefully planned, run, and assessed. How exactly does a collaborative or cooperative project advance learning in a particular discipline? What techniques and platforms support productive interaction and interdependence? And how should individual students be assessed for work they perform in a collective framework?
The Collaborative Learning Seminar is a series of four workshops for Columbia graduate students and postdocs interested in exploring small group learning activities and the instructional methods and technologies that support them. Working in groups, participants experience various cooperative interactions and support each other’s exploration of collaborative learning. By the end of the seminar, each participant will have designed a collaborative learning activity linked to learning objectives that will be ready to run with students or show to colleagues.
Participants who attend all four sessions and complete related activities receive a letter from CTL certifying successful completion that can be referenced on CVs and other descriptions of pedagogical preparation.
For graduate students enrolled in the Teaching Development Program (TDP), this seminar satisfies the Advanced Track seminar requirement.
Click on the toggles below to read the session descriptions.
Session 1: Experiencing Collaborative Learning
In the first session of the Collaborative Learning Seminar, participants unpack assumptions about group assignments and step into group and team interactions to experience them from the student’s perspective.
Session 2: Modes of Collaborative Learning
In this session, participants learn about theories of peer interaction and learning, discuss pertinence of these theories to learning in their discipline, and connect learning objectives to a collaborative learning exercise for an actual or theoretical class.
Session 3: Assessing Collaborative Learning
How do you know who did what for a group assignment, and how do you measure different types of contributions? In this session, participants consider techniques for assessing collaborative work and discuss grading rubrics that can help define and evaluate learning through group projects.
Session 4: Mobilizing Collaborative Learning
Having sketched out goals and assessments for their own collaborative learning activity, participants are ready to explore the logistics of implementation. During this final session, participants will workshop their activity designs with each other and receive targeted guidance for running these activities in digital environments and/or in class.
- Develop an interactive learning community for graduate students and postdocs interested in active learning and social pedagogies
- Create an environment where participants can experience and discuss group learning techniques
- Build confidence in participants’ ability to design, implement, and assess collaborative learning activities
By the end of this seminar, participants will be able to:
- Describe theories, models, and tools supporting collaborative learning
- Connect collaborative learning assignments to priorities and skills pertinent to one’s academic discipline
- Assess group learning assignments and assessment techniques
- Develop a fully conceptualized group learning assignment, including a strategic assessment plan
This seminar meets four times over the course of the semester.
I really enjoyed the hands on aspects of these workshops as they helped reinforce the concepts in a fun and collaborative fashion. I feel that I was able to get a lot out of the workshops and am looking forward to implementing techniques and platforms I learned about.
Thank you immensely – it was a wonderful experience and I am excited to bring all that I learned back with me to my department!
Very useful, I particularly like the group-based format, and the balances between talk and activities. The homework was also useful and well-integrated.
Email CTLgrads@columbia.edu with any questions about this seminar.
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The Columbia Center for Teaching and Learning provides an array of support for graduate students in both their current and future teaching responsibilities.