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Context - Problem - Solution


Small to medium-sized seminars should be possible at different locations and also completely independent of location. As groups, content should be created, discussed, collected or compiled so that an examination of the topic, an application of knowledge and a joint production is created.


The overview of deadlines, files and versions of a document can quickly be lost. Group organization and communication are usually confusing and difficult online. Bringing together parts of a group work can also become a complicated undertaking.


Group organization can be supported by online collaboration tools such as virtual white boards, wikis, chats and conference systems. The joint development of content, such as mind maps, hypertexts or individual documents and graphics, is possible in a simplified manner, either simultaneously or with a time delay.

Content versioning and shared file storage help to maintain an overview, and the communication tools make discussions transparent and open.

Tips for practice

How can I organize collaboration with and among students?

In order to enable collaboration with and among students, it is first necessary to allow sufficient time for this. The exchange and collaboration should be planned with a good time buffer and communicated with concrete tasks and, if necessary, role assignments. This makes it easier for students to organize themselves. With regard to tools, interactive whiteboards are particularly useful. We generally recommend using tools that can be used both online and in person and, if necessary, even create a seamless transition between the "worlds".

A list of BTU-internal options, primarily for creating joint texts, can be found below:

There are also some BTU-external options. However, please note that it is up to you and the students to use them, in particular with regard to data protection. Do not collect any personal data in the tools!
In any case, we recommend that you enter into an exchange with the students and always offer an internal BTU alternative to external options:

  • Draw.Chat - This allows you to create browser-based interactive whiteboards free of charge. The tool is particularly user-friendly thanks to its clear layout. Draw.Chat is an open source application and complies with the European General Data Protection Regulation.
  • Miro - This tool enables collaborative work, just like with a whiteboard or moderation board. Use it to create, link and sort notes together. Apply for a free educational license from Miro. Pay particular attention to data protection here!

How do I motivate my students to actively work together in group projects?

  • In particular, use the first synchronous phases to strengthen the sense of togetherness that is essential for cooperative learning. For example, you can
  • Incorporate familiarization games that fund the development of social contacts as a prerequisite for successful communication and work.
  • Set up private exchange channels, e.g. forums or conference rooms.
  • Set suitable tasks, e.g. project-based, problem-oriented.
  • Create rules for virtual group work together with the learners.
  • Work with clear role allocations.
  • Set up private group work areas that enable cooperation, collaboration and exchange.

Examples from practice