Either as a graduate student, postdoctoral fellow, or faculty member, I’ve been teaching math to college students for nearly 25 years. Dating back to the start of my teaching career, I have always made substantial use of group work in my courses.

To guide students through experience of collaborating, I always give students group work instructions. I’ve recently been pondering these instructions and realized that they are lacking. They’re too procedural, they’re dry, and they don’t give students anything to aspire to.

I recognize that some students like group work and some (likely MORE) despise it. Regardless, I think that…

Chad M. Topaz

Professor, data scientist, applied mathematician, social justice researcher and activist, nonprofit leader. See www.chadtopaz.com and www.qsideinstitute.org.

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