Effective Teamwork Assessment in Online Courses

With the convenience of online courses, many students are opting for online alternatives to traditional onsite courses. Universities have responded and have provided courses in a variety of formats to meet student needs. Moving courses online, however, posts a challenge to teamwork assessment that is usually done in a synchronous in-person fashion. Teamwork in university courses develop collaboration, communication, and professional skills necessary for the workforce. In traditional onsite courses students can easily meet with teammates in person and set expectations for individual members. Teamwork activities in onsite courses can be assessed through a variety of methods during class time. In contrast, online courses have many challenges when assessing teamwork. Students may be geographically diverse, making it difficult to schedule meetings. Program files and data must be transferred between students asynchronously. How can teamwork be effectively assessed in online courses?