Stay organized and on task straight from your cell phone!
If you’re like most college students (including me), you hate group projects. After all, what’s there to like? With incompatible schedules, lazy partners, and miscommunications, every end-of-the-semester project can feel like a nightmare. But in this world of technology, there are a thousand ways to stay connected and be proactive in your group work despite the issues that come with dividing the work amongst a group of busy students. To help you get through it, here three practical ways technology can help you get the grade you want on your next group project.
Keep in Touch with a Reliable Messaging Service
It’s happened time and time again -- one member of the group has an Android phone and the rest use iPhones, making text messaging clunky and unreliable. To stay on top of your group members, use an app like “GroupMe” to iron out the details of your project without having to communicate face-to-face and waste valuable time. By messaging through these apps, you’ll have a more solid record of your communication, reducing the chances of a message failing to send through the SMS method. If you have an announcement that all members of your group should know about, ask them to “like” the message to let you know they’ve seen it.
Stay In-Sync with a Collaborative Work Space
If your group project requires you to type a significant amount of information, you’ll want to keep your workflow consistent. Know exactly which group member is working on a specific section of the copy by using a collaborative word processor such as Google Docs. You can make comments on one another’s work, suggest changes, and even chat via messenger -- all through one program. Avoid the confusion of multiple documents and eliminate the compatibility and formatting issues that arise across different programs.
Stay Organized with a Single File Destination
Have a multimedia presentation to prepare? Organization is key with every project, but it’s especially important when you’re dealing with multiple files. In order to keep the confusion to a minimum, use a storage program such as DropBox or Google Drive to keep all of your files in one place that is shared and accessible to all members of your group. To take your organization to the next level, take the time to divide your files into subfolders, and even subfolders of subfolders. Avoid the clutter and label!
WRITTEN BY Samantha Storms Hofstra University
Despite her last name, this senior journalism and publishing student doesn't have dreams of becoming a weather forecaster upon graduation from Hofstra University. She is currently exploring her love of language as a Media Editorial Intern for the psychology team at Macmillan Learning. A true Pittsburgher through and through, Samantha enjoys knitting, listening to eighties pop, and searching for the best pho spots.