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Writing together

Writing together can be a very motivating type of collaborative learning. By having to collectively deliver a piece, students are forced to have a substantive discussion with each other, and together determine com how certain matters have to be formulated. This increases the understanding of the material and as such the learning efficiency. By being able to do this online, it becomes easier to implement in education, because students to not necessarily have to physically come together to write. Another advantage of working online is that the drafts are also visible for the instructor. This makes it possible to monitor progress and give feedback.

Using various ICT possibilities, the students can present the results of a project/study to the instructor, each other, clients or other interested parties. An assignment can for instance be to search for references together on a particular issue, and discuss and evaluate these in written form. Or to write a research proposal together. 




Which tools are available?

Wiki: Using a wiki, various students can simultaneously work on a particular text online. It is also possible to write a piece in smaller assignments and parts, and add these together in a later stage, or connect them using hyperlinks. In this way, the wiki becomes a small website. A wiki offers the possibility to keep track of revisions and also to see who changed what and possibly revert these changes. 

Weblog A web log can be used individually and by a group. In a group web log a group of students can be made responsible for the content of the blog. For individual contributions, a collaborative aspect can also be implemented by using the ‘comment’ function to add comments to eachother’s posts. Apart from that, it is also easy to link to eachother’s web logs, which can give support in learning as a group process. 

Cloudservices: So called cloud services like GoogleDocs or Dropbox provide students with the opportunity to save documents online and give each other permission to view and possibly change each other’s documents. Important here is that the instructor cannot view the drafts and the collaboration process. These are also not saved within the TU Delft. Currently, no cloud service is yet supported with the TU Delft, but it is expected that the TU will join SURF conext  

Overview of all available cloud services:  


Want to know more?

Een wiki gebruiken voor gezamenlijke kennisopbouw (website), 2005, Cindy De Smet, Ivan D’haese. (Dutch)

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