Educational Conundrum of the Week: Assessing Group Participation Fairly

When doing group work, I expect that there will be at least one group member who doesn’t pull their weight. As a student, I remember having to pick up the slack to get group assignments done. Instructors know this is common in group work and have tried various methods to assess performance. One such method is having students evaluate their group members’ performance using Blackboard’s self and peer assessment tool (Click here for a how-to video). How do you help ensure students participate equally and are assessed fairly in groups work?

By:  Ken Harmel

2 Responses to Educational Conundrum of the Week: Assessing Group Participation Fairly

  1. Jonathan Hughes October 16, 2017 at 6:37 pm #

    I have students collect data in groups, share that data, and then individually write up the collective results. Students who do not contribute much to data collection usually do poorly on the write up. To make sure that all groups collect quality data, I make sure to the best of my ability that each group includes keen students.

    • Ken Harmel October 16, 2017 at 11:56 pm #

      Thanks for sharing your approach, it sounds very effective and flexible to fit in any classroom. When you said, “Students who do not contribute much to data collection usually do poorly on the write up.”, I feel they just do the bare minimum regardless of activity/course and just want to get through. Your technique pinpoints the students who do the work and should therefore receive the grades.