Effortless English Archives

Automatic English For The People

Friday, September 23, 2005

Might Individual Presentations Be Better?

by AJ

"Paradoxically, the best way for a group to be smart is for each person in it to think and act as independently as possible."

Thats another quote from Creating Passionate Users and it mirrors a phenomenon Ive noticed this semester: Individual presentations are usually better than group presentations.

The reason seems obvious-- with an individual presentation there is only one person responsible... they are totally accountable. But with a group, there is a tendency to slack off. No one takes full responsibility. I remember this same phenomenon when I was a student. I HATED group projects because the end results were always so crappy.

This does present a paradox, for in language education we want to encourage communication in the target language. The trick, I think, is to build individual accountability into group projects. Instead of one monolithic product/presentation,.... perhaps its better to design patchwork projects-- something each individual contributes too.... in which communicatin flourishes but accountability and independence remain.

Im not yet sure what the game rules of such a project would be.