Students use technology tools to collaborate with others rather than working individually at all times.
The Collaborative characteristic describes the degree to which technology is used to facilitate, enable, or enhance students’ opportunities to work with peers and outside experts. This characteristic considers the use of conventional collaborative technology tools as well as other kinds of technology tools that assist students working with others.
This page provides greater detail about the Collaborative learning characteristic of the Technology Integration Matrix. To see the entire matrix or to locate other characteristics, return to the Matrix. Descriptors for typical teacher activity, student activity, and instructional settings for Collaborative learning are provided below, along with links to all of the Collaborative learning video lesson pages and additional resources.
Collaborative Learning Descriptors for Each of the Five Levels
Individual student use of technology tools
Students primarily work alone when using technology. Students may collaborate without using technology tools.
The teacher directs students to work alone on tasks involving technology.
The setting is arranged for direct instruction and individual seat work.
Collaborative use of tools in conventional ways
Students have opportunities to use collaborative tools, such as email, in conventional ways. These opportunities for collaboration with others through technology, or in using technology, are limited and are not a regular part of their learning.
The teacher directs students in the conventional use of technology tools for working with others.
The setting allows for the possibility of group work, and at least some collaborative technology tools are available.
Collaborative use of tools; some student choice and exploration
Students independently use technology tools in conventional ways for collaboration. Students are developing a conceptual understanding of the use of technology tools for working with others.
The teacher provides opportunities for students to use technology to work with others. The teacher selects and provides technology tools for students to use in collaborative ways, and encourages students to begin exploring the use of these tools.
The setting allows multiple students to access technology tools simultaneously.
Choice of tools and regular use for collaboration
Technology use for collaboration by students is regular and normal in this setting. Students choose the best tools to use to accomplish their work.
The teacher fosters a collaborative learning environment and supports students meaningful choices in their selection of technology tools for collaboration.
Technology tools that allow for collaboration are always available to meet the needs of all students.
Collaboration with peers, outside experts, and others in ways that may not be possible without technology
Students regularly use technology tools to collaborate with peers, experts, and others who may be in different locations and may represent different experiences, cultures, and points of view.
The teacher seeks partnerships outside of the setting to allow students to access experts and peers in other locations, and encourages students to extend the use of collaborative technology tools in higher-order learning activities that may not be possible without the use of technology tools.
Technology tools in this setting connect to text, voice, and video applications and network access has sufficient bandwidth to support the use of these technologies for all students simultaneously.
A successful collaborative learning environment doesn’t happen overnight. There’s a sense in which it’s both the hardest and the easiest of the five TIM characteristics to implement. Hardest, because…. (Continue reading)