Multimedia Group Projects
Written by Mishiara Baker
October 7, 2020 • 2 minute read
Multimedia group projects engage students in the production of short media pieces - videos, podcasts, or websites, etc - whereby they can demonstrate their understanding of content and produce impressive media objects that are fun to make. Multimedia projects require clearly defined steps for students to follow as well as guidance to support their introduction and use of a media creation tool.
Multimedia group projects are opportunities for students to creatively demonstrate their mastery of course concepts and collaborate with one another.
- Peer-to-peer learning: Students work together and learn from one another, enhancing their connections in the remote environment
- Capitalizes on student interest in media: Most students engage readily with the opportunity to make a creative media project–a welcome variation from much of their remote learning experiences
- Active participation: Students are engaged with a task–to build coherent and cohesive media pieces as they interact with one another, rather than passively watching a lecture on their screens.
- Builds student confidence and capacity: Remotely creating and sharing their professional-looking media projects helps build students’ confidence in their own abilities and potential
- Real world application: Students gain skill and practice working within their remote teams while constructing and presenting their ideas via multimedia, just as they might in a professional or future educational context
Download our how-to guide of using multimedia group projects in remote/online teaching from Google Docs.
Synchronous Application Example
Set students up for success by providing clear instructions and resources on the tools needed to complete the project as well as clarity on project parameters and goals. Taking time in class to make sure students understand the design of the assignment and the production process, will clear the way for them to get to work and be successful. In this example, the instructor used Adobe Spark Video.
- Introduce the project: Start with discussing the project as a group, provide examples of a successful final project on a shared screen in Zoom or as preparation for the live class in Canvas. Be clear about the steps and deliverables for each step of the process.
- Tool support: Give students the guidelines and resources they need to learn the basics of the media creation tool you choose to use. (see links below for resources)
- Divide into groups: Put students in breakout rooms in their designated groups initially to explore the case study, answer specific questions about the case study and determine their key findings.
- Group roles: Task students with designating their roles within the group and make suggestions for these roles, such as image finder, meeting scribe, copywriter, media tool expert, team presenter, etc.
- Visit groups: Visit the students in their breakout rooms on Zoom to support students and guide them as you might in a face-to-face class. Explain why and how they can approach the problem presented and encourage or redirect their inquiry.
- Share back: Return groups to the main session and ask them to share a finding or a question. An instructor can then answer common questions and highlight a successful approach along the way.
- Online office hours: Make your office hours available for students who wish to discuss the project so that they can check in and get additional personalized feedback.
- Showcase: Have student groups present their finished product and ask their peers for structured feedback, for example: Did the project successfully convey the group’s ideas? How well did they utilize the technology tool? Respond to and reference course concepts? How applicable were the images, audio and text?
Asynchronous Application Example
Using Adobe Spark Web Pages, students can do individual or group media projects where most of their work is completed outside of class. They can share their progress via Canvas discussion boards or Assignments, or in the live session. They could develop their projects for the most part outside of class time and can meet with their groups in lieu of a live class zoom session.
- Follow general process above: Using Canvas, outline the project, provide instructions for each step of the process, showcase an example, and provide support and resource links for the technology
- Group work: Task student groups to schedule and meet up in Zoom regularly. They can develop their ideas in shared docs and share screens while working in the media creation tool
- Consider using the groups function in Canvas: The Canvas groups function creates groups in Canvas and allows students to share in their own space on Canvas and submit assignments and discussion posts as a group.
- Written reflection using Canvas discussion boards, Students can provide specific project updates or share in a Canvas discussion board
- Report back to the class: Students can post project links, feedback, or questions to a Canvas discussion board or save feedback for a discussion in a live Zoom class session.
Preparation & Facilitation Tips
- Consider your student grouping preferences
- Become familiar with using breakout rooms in Zoom/Canvas discussion boards, and learn the basic functionality and use of the media tool you suggest they use.
- Practice going through your own instructions to determine clarity before presenting to students
- Prepare to provide any needed information resource (e.g., a worksheet) at time of the activity and for review
- Check accessibility of tools and provide options for deliverables if students face challenges in access or use of a particular tool depending on their technology access and abilities.
- Locate and delineate components of a successful project to provide to students
- Provide links to basic support documentation on the tools you are using
- Allow students time to explore the tool in class or with a brief, low-stakes assignment
- Consider making the final media and tool a choice the students make together in their groups and task them with learning about and using the technology tool they choose to produce it with.
- Consider a mini-project, such as creating a quick social media post in Adobe Spark that represents course concepts visually and with minimal text
- During synchronous class sessions, visit breakout rooms and check in on students, support their understanding and answer any questions.
Dr. Leigh Meredith, assistant professor of Rhetoric & Language, introduced an interactive multimedia assignment in lieu of traditional oral summaries. Students were asked to use Adobe Spark, available to the USF community for free.
Are you or someone you know finding success with incorporating multimedia group projects? If so, we'd love to hear from you! Email email@example.com.
- Google Suite tools for collaborative work - could ask students to answer questions in a shared google doc, create a slide in a shared slide presentation, fill in a spreadsheet, etc.
- Zoom breakout rooms for synchronous class sessions
- Zoom for student group meetings
- Canvas discussion boards for posting project links, assignments, and examples
- Adobe Spark for website, social media post & video creation (ETS offers support on this tool)
- Audacity, Garageband or Anchor.fm for podcast creation (ETS offers support on these tools)
- Quicktime or Zoom for screen recording
- Google Sites for website creation
- Canva.com is a free, easy-to-use template-rich online design resource for quick and easy creation of flyers, diagrams, posters
Not sure where to start? We are here to help! To learn how to implement the jigsaw method effectively in your course, contact Instructional Design to request a consultation.
Contact Instructional Technology & Training to schedule a training session and access self-guided training materials.
- Droumeva M. & Murphy, D. (2016, July). A sound pedagogy: Active learning through media production [Conference session]. 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies. Download from IATED Digital Library.