Positive interdependence can help produce meaningful relationships, greater productivity, and growth.
To be sure students do collaborate and interact, you can use the groups tool and group assignments to foster an interactive online environment. A good rule of thumb to use before adding group activities is to only assign group work for projects that an individual student cannot do as well independently, and finish in the set amount of time.
You can create a group assignment and release it to one or more groups within your course. Each group submits one collaborative assignment and all members receive the same grade. You can create a single assignment and assign it to all groups, or create several unique assignments and assign them to individual groups. Only you and the members in a group have access to the assignment.
The overall grade for an assignment can appear to users as a numeric value, letter grade, percentage, text, or as complete/incomplete. You can choose the primary display for the group assignment column created automatically in the Grade Center.
Whenever possible, give students opportunities to get to know each other or work in groups in a non-graded, icebreaker type of activity. The more comfortable your students are with each other in your course as a whole, the more likely they will succeed when working in smaller groups with a focused agenda. Simple group exercises not only help students feel more comfortable, but also can help them begin to trust one another and communicate more freely in the online environment.
In the following example, the group assignment appears in the Assignments content area where it was created and on the group homepage. The following image shows the instructor view.
You can allow students to submit their work for a group assignment more than once. The group can receive feedback and a grade for each submission.
When you allow multiple attempts for an assignment, you can also select which attempt to use in the Grade Center from the Score attempts using drop-down list.