Time, place and space – student group collaboration using Google Drive

Breen, Frances & Prasolova, Nina (2015) Time, place and space – student group collaboration using Google Drive. In Learning for Life and Work in a Complex World (HERDSA 2015), July 6-9, 2015, Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre.

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Virtual working environments are intrinsic to the contemporary workplace and collaborative skills are a vital graduate capability. To develop students’ collaborative skills, first year medical laboratory science students undertake a group poster project, based on a blended learning model. Learning is scaffolded in lectures, workshops in collaborative learning spaces, practitioner mentoring sessions, and online resources. Google Drive provides an online collaborative space for students to realise tangible outcomes from this learning. A Google Drive document is created for each group and shared with members. In this space, students assign tasks and plan workflow, share research, progressively develop poster content, reflect and comment on peer contributions and use the messaging functions to ‘talk’ to group members. This provides a readily accessible, transparent record of group work, crucial in peer assessment, and a communication channel for group members and the lecturer, who can support groups if required. This knowledge creation space also augments productivity and effectiveness of face-to-face collaboration. As members are randomly allocated to groups and are often of diverse backgrounds and unknown to each other, resilience is built as students navigate the uncertainties and complexities of group dynamics, learning to focus on the goal of the team task as they constructively and professionally engage in team dialogue. Students are responsible and accountable for individual and group work. The use of Google Drive was evaluated in a survey including Likert scale and open ended qualitative questions. Statistical analysis was carried out. Results show students (79%) valued the inclusion of online space in collaborative work and highly appreciated (78%) the flexibility provided by Google Drive, while recognising the need for improved notification functionality. Teaching staff recognised the advantages in monitoring and moderating collaborative group work, and the transformational progression in student collaborative as well as technological skill acquisition, including professional dialogue.

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ID Code: 88964
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: enabling technologies, technologies for collaboration, team work, distributed workplace, communication skills, medical laboratory scientist, medical laboratory technician, group work, collaborative spaces
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > MEDICAL BIOCHEMISTRY AND METABOLOMICS (110100)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > CURRICULUM AND PEDAGOGY (130200)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > CURRICULUM AND PEDAGOGY (130200) > Medicine Nursing and Health Curriculum and Pedagogy (130209)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Biomedical Sciences
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Division of Technology, Information and Library Services
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Deposited On: 12 Oct 2015 23:55
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2015 22:52

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