#StudiousSeptember: Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

22 Sep

Group projects are both the best and worst parts of classes. On one hand, you have people to help you tackle the big huge assignment that would take you forever to finish if you had to do it alone. On the other, you have to work with other people and trust them to get their pieces of it done. There’s no way to get around having group projects because in the workforce it comes down to working in a team too. So we might as well figure out how to make them less stressful or at the least more enjoyable. Here’s how I have made group work a little more bearable.

1. Share contact information right away

It seems like such a simple thing, but it honestly is so helpful to just share emails and phone numbers as soon as you have your group. This way you can start a group text to schedule things, or if someone is sick and has to miss class, everyone is in the loop. It also makes it easy to hold each other accountable.

2. Create deadlines for each other

Usually projects come with 1 deadline: the due date. As a group, come up with deadlines for different components of the project depending on the priority and what works with your schedules. Try setting up a date to have a draft done, or times to practice a presentation. Set deadlines with some cushion room in case something comes up.

3. Communicate and give the benefit of the doubt

Sometimes group members wait a long time to get their piece of the assignment done. If your piece requires their work to be done before you can even start, just ask how long they think it will be. If you need to switch to get things done faster, discuss that option. Just make sure that everyone is in the loop about who is doing what and when. If a group member is having a hard time getting it done on time or makes some mistakes, give them the benefit of the doubt and see how you can help.

4. Get to know one another

Group projects are a great way to get to know your classmates. In major classes, these are great connections to make and a way to create study groups later on! Learning about what they are involved in and their interests could also spark inspiration for the assignment that could take it to the next level. Learn about their strengths and weaknesses to distribute work in the most efficient ways, too.

Working in a team can definitely be a challenge, but with some strategies it can be a great benefit to you.

-Gabriela  

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