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A Proposed Framework for Teaching Team-effectiveness in Team-based Projects

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

Teams and Teamwork in Design

Tagged Division

Design in Engineering Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.94.1 - 25.94.12

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Paper Authors


Patricia Kristine Sheridan University of Toronto

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Patricia Kristine Sheridan is a Ph.D. candidate with the Institute for Leadership Education in Engineering at the University of Toronto. She holds a B.A.Sc. and M.A.Sc. in mechanical engineering from the University of Toronto. She is a member of the teaching team and a course developer for the Praxis cornerstone design courses.

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Greg Evans University of Toronto

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Greg Evans is a professor of chemical engineering and applied chemistry and the Director of the Southern Ontario Centre for Atmospheric Aerosol Research at the University of Toronto. He is Co-leader of Engineering Leaders of Tomorrow and the Associate Director of the Institute for Leadership Education in Engineering (ILead). He has been awarded the 2010 Engineers Canada Medal for Distinction in Engineering Education and the 2010 American Society for Engineering Education St. Lawrence Section Outstanding Teaching Award. He is a licensed Engineer (P.Eng.) and holds a B.A.Sc., M.A.Sc., and Ph.D. (Toronto).

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Doug Reeve University of Toronto

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Doug Reeve is a Professor and former Chair (2001-2011) of Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry at the University of Toronto. He is Director of the Institute for Leadership Education in Engineering (ILead) and Co-leader of Engineering Leaders of Tomorrow. He has received numerous awards and has been named FCIC, FTAPPI, FIAWS, and FCAE. He is a licensed Engineer (P.Eng.) and holds a B.Sc., M.A.Sc., and Ph.D. (Toronto).

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Teaching Team Effectiveness in Team-Based ProjectsTeams offer students rich learning opportunities to learn about course material while simultaneouslydeveloping important teamwork skills. Students can gain conceptual knowledge relating to teamdevelopment and function through lectures, however personalized feedback and reflection are also neededfor them to learn from their actual teamwork experiences. There are also practical limits on providingpersonalized feedback to students such as instructor time constraints and, in some cases, class size. Aweb-based intervention is being designed to create a safe, virtual environment in which students can learnabout their team-effectiveness competencies through the use of self- and peer-assessment in their projectteams. Specifically, this intervention will provide students with a team-effectiveness framework to createa common language by which structured 360° feedback can be provided based on visible behaviourcompetencies. Personalized exercises and actionable strategies that guide targeted learning in the areasthereby identified will be subsequently provided to students based on their received feedback.This paper outlines the pedagogical foundations of this intervention, the team-effectiveness frameworkbeing utilized and the effect of personalized development of individual team-effectiveness competencieson team performance. Details of the design to stimulate students to provide mature feedback and avoidbullying issues will be outlined. Additionally, teaching tools to be used alongside the intervention,including how to self- and peer-assess accurately, team-effectiveness instruction, and how personal team-effectiveness competencies contribute to the development of an effective team, will be discussed. A setof assessment metrics that provide useful information in determining the effectiveness of the interventionand in determining if students’ team-effectiveness was improved will be presented.

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