How can educators promote supportive, productive learning?


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Collaborative environments make learners feel safe to express their perspective. In these spaces, learners can see the value of different approaches.

The takeaway?

Others may know or see something I don't, and together, we can do more.

Why Value Collaborative Learning?

Collaborative learning helps participants:

  • reach higher learning goals

  • build teamwork and communication skills

  • become more self aware

Collaborative learning is appropriate in classrooms, corporate training, and community activities.

Photo by Zainul Yasni on Unsplash Photo by Zainul Yasni on Unsplash

4 " I "s In Collaborative Learning

Collaborative learning is most effective when participants are working towards a common goal. But teamwork isn't always easy.

Maintain a positive environment in collaborative learning through:

  • Interdependence: we can count on each other

  • Interaction: we talk about our work, nobody is "doing their own thing"

  • Individual accountability: we each take ownership of our contribution

  • Interpersonal skills: we remember we're all people and treat each other with respect


Margo meets her group for a meeting and tells them she has already done the whole project. Which of the 4 I's does she need to work on?

Virtuous Cycles Of Collaboration

When a collaborative environment is established, learners and leaders can benefit from a virtuous cycle. This is when positive behaviour leads to more positive behaviour.

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Over time, learners in collaborative environments may:

  • become more confident

  • improve their ability to resolve conflicts

  • build leadership skills

  • learn to ask for support from team members when needed

Take Action

"If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself."

- Henry Ford

Are you in a work or educational environment that could benefit from more collaboration?

Talk to your leader or your learners. How can you adjust your approach to be more collaborative?


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