Formation and Development of Effective Student Teams to Facilitate Team-Based Learning
The ability to work in an effective team has been identified by employers as a key skill for students entering the work force. Furthermore, a desire for active learning by both students and faculty has also increased the use of team-based learning. However, team-based learning also has its drawbacks – notably, managing conflict among team members, reconciling differing levels of effort by students, and the construction of a fair and effective method of assessment for teambased work. Highly developed and cohesive teams allow the focus of the classroom to be on engaged and transformative learning, yet previous research has focused mostly on the learning outcomes of such teams rather than on the formation and development processes.
The application of team-based learning in a third year, large enrollment course for engineering technology and engineering students will be discussed. Specifically, strategies used to select and develop teams and methods used to optimize the team-based learning processes will be highlighted. Student performance on key team-based learning activities and student evaluation of team-based learning will be shared. Suggestions for using team-based learning with engineering and engineering technology students will conclude the paper.