Commuter Crossing: Group Projects

CommuterCrossing-nameGroup projects are great and awful at the same time. They give you a chance to meet and work with other students to create some type of presentation. They also seem to be one of the biggest commuter headaches. Finding time to meet at the same place at the same time is difficult, but very possible. Here’s how you can make it work.

Start early – If you know you have a group assignment to do, the easiest time to figure everything out is immediately after class. Even if your peers have a class following the one that just ended, gather your classmates together to swap contact information. Once you have each other’s phone numbers and email addresses, planning will become easier.

Plan meetings – If your fellow classmates don’t have class before or after the one for your group project, make those your meeting times. You and your classmates are already on campus for that one class, so why not make the time before and after class productive as well? However, if you or somebody else has class, you’re going to have to plan for another time. Mid-afternoon or late at night seem to be good times to meet because most commuters have either morning or night classes due to work and internship schedules.

Google Drive – Google Drive allows multiple users access to a certain document, and each of those users can alter it. Once you and your groupmates have figured out who is doing what for the project, you can add your fair share of the work online at your own time. Unfortunately, if you have a very hands-on project, the Google Drive approach does not work. If a project requires building or decorating something, I suggest the Chamberlain Student Center Pit, Profs Place, or any other building with a lobby area.

While group projects are sometimes difficult, they teach you a lot of things like time management and working with others. When your teachers tell you this is a real life skill, don’t take that for granted. Many jobs want to see that you can get along with your peers in a work environment and be able to create a schedule so that you’re not overworked.

For comments/questions about this story, email or tweet @thewhitonline.

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