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Communicating & Collaborating

Communication and Collaboration are two of the four essential skills (4Cs) "that students need to succeed in work, life and citizenship" (P21 framework 21st century learning). Making connections and social interaction play an important role in helping learners assimilate new information (Lombardi, 2007, p. 7).  Therefore authentic environments that make effective use of communication technologies to encourage students to connect, communicate and share ideas are the most likely to succeed (Herrington, Reeves, & Oliver, 2010.


"The imparting or exchanging of information by speaking, writing, or using some other medium"  (Oxford University Press, 2016, para. 1).

Edelson, Pea and Gomez (1996) stated: "The act of speaking requires an individual to place a structure and a coherency on his or her understanding that may lead the individual to recognize gaps in that understanding or forge new connections between formerly disconnected knowledge ... The social act of attempting to share and reconcile the knowledge of different individuals motivates learning in a way that is much rarer... among solitary learners" (p. 152).

Communicating online
When people communicate and interact online we miss out on vital body language cues that assist with interpreting meaning. To avoid misunderstandings it is helpful to abide by common online protocols and the core rules of netiquette  (Shea, 1990-2011)
Important skills for effective communication: 
(Learn to communicate effectively, University of Sydney)
  • Listening and responding skills
  • Conversation skills
  • Assertiveness skills
Common educational forms of communication
Lecture bored me to death image


"The action of working with someone to produce something" (Oxford University Press, 2016, para. 1).


3:36min video created by JanH119 ‎(2011)‎

Cooperative learning

Cooperative learning: "is a specific kind of collaborative learning. In cooperative learning, students work together in small groups on a structured activity. They are individually accountable for their work, and the work of the group as a whole is also assessed" (TeachersFirst).
Important skills for effective collaboration


Teamwork phases

Technologies & Tutorials

Collaborative workspaces
File sharing
Online meetings
Online classrooms

Teaching ideas & examples


More info...