Learning collaboratively, a mini guide for #creativeHE
A mini guide
to help you get started
Learning together can be
very rewarding, try it!
• Let’s keep the groups small, up to 4 members is
• Remember getting together early on with your
group members or study buddy is really important,
if possible synchronously (try organising a Google
• Agree how you are going to learn together.
• See differences as enrichment opportunities
• If you are from different cultures use this as an
opportunity to extend understanding.
• Reach out to your facilitator if you need help.
• Be honest with each other and realistic.
• Ask yourselves the question: How best can we
build on individual strengths? What do we bring to
the group? How can we support each other?
If you are new to
• Remember it doesn’t have to be a shared
product you are working on!
• Share the journey instead! If you capture
your learning in a portfolio, share it with
your group members.
• Start from simple collaborative
• The 5C Framework might help you with this
and move progressively towards more
complex opportunities for collaboration. See
what works for you and your group.
• Try also FISh, a process model for individual
and collective inquiry.
Some ideas for
There are many ways group members can work
together. If the focus is agreed among members
that has the potential to increase commitment
and collaboration. You might want to set-up a
• to support and encourage each other
• to discuss readings
• to work on a shared project
• To work on an individual project and get
• to share reflections on your learning which
could be via your portfolio or blog
(Nerantzi & Beckingham, 2014, 2015)
used in #creativeHE to
scaffold group work
The 5C Framework for social learning
5C linear visualisation Nerantzi & Beckingham
Suggestion: Use it like this, progressively as we go through the weeks, especially
if you are new to online collaborative learning
The 5C Framework for social learning
5C non-linear visualisation Nerantzi & Beckingham
Suggestion: If you are more experienced learners in your group, feel free to pick
‘n’ mix more randomly from the proposed approaches.
• creating hooks
• navigate in and
• listening and
• open sharing
• sharing and
• playful and
• curiosity and
(Nerantzi & Uhlin, 2012, Nerantzi, 2014)
used in #creativeHE to support
individual and collective inquiry
FISh (Nerantzi & Uhlin, 2012, Nerantzi, 2014): simplified
for individual and collective inquiry
FISh model (Nerantzi & Uhlin, 2012)
Learning together also
happens within communities
• If you prefer to learn as a member
of the course community and not
in a group, this is absolutely fine.
• You will have opportunities there
to adapt these strategies but also
bring in your own and see what
works for you.
• Collaboration can happen
anywhere, we can make it happen
Our community is available at
Nerantzi, C. (2014) A personal journey of discoveries through a DIY open course development for professional
development of teachers in Higher Education (invited paper),Journal of Pedagogic Development, University of
Bedfordshire, Volume 4, Issue 2, pp. 42-58 http://www.beds.ac.uk/jpd
Nerantzi, C. & Beckingham, S. (2015) BYOD4L: Learning to use own smart devices for learning and teaching through the
5C framework, in Middleton, A. (ed.) (2015): Smart learning: teaching and learning with smartphones and tablets in
post-compulsory education, pp. 108-126, Sheffield: MELSIG publication, available at
Nerantzi, C. & Beckingham, S. (2014) BYOD4L – Our Magical Open Box to Enhance Individuals’ Learning Ecologies,
in: Jackson, N. & Willis, J. (eds.) Lifewide Learning and Education in Universities and Colleges E-Book, available
at http://www.learninglives.co.uk/e-book.html. – invited chapter
Nerantzi, C. & Uhlin, L. (2012) FISh, original illustration, available
at http://www.flickr.com/photos/chrissinerantzi/9963707266/in/set-72157632690605470 / FISh description available
Artwork by Ellie Livermore @ellielivermore