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ERIC Number: ED573963
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Student Teams in the Engineering Classroom and Beyond: Setting up Students for Success. CRLT Occasional Paper No. 29
Finelli, Cynthia J.; Bergom, Inger; Mesa, Vilma
Center for Research on Learning and Teaching
There is wide demand for engineering graduates to be capable of working well in teams. The engineering accreditation body (ABET, has responded to this need by requiring engineering programs to demonstrate that their graduates have "an ability to function on multidisciplinary teams" (Haag, Froyd, Coleman, & Caso, n.d.), and many engineering instructors have integrated the use of student teams into their courses. The characteristics of effective student teams have been widely studied, and there is ample research on what makes student teams succeed. Johnson, Johnson, and Smith (2007), for example, define five traits of effective student teams, and they note that each one is critical for success. The five traits are: (1) positive interdependence; (2) individual accountability; (3) face-to-face interaction; (4) interpersonal and small-group skills; and (5) assess its performance. The purpose of this Occasional Paper is to provide instructors with a framework for ensuring that student teams possess these five traits and are set up for success. A sample peer evaluation form is appended.
Center for Research on Learning and Teaching (CRLT), University of Michigan. 1071 Palmer Commons, 100 Washtenaw Ave. Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2218. Tel: 734-764-0505; Fax: 734-647-3600; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: University of Michigan, Center for Research on Learning and Teaching (CRLT)