Tip Sheet: Small Group Work in Online Learning Environments

Teaching online is different from teaching in-person, but it does still allow for small group work. Review the resources below for five tools you can use to facilitate student discussions and group work online.

  1. Canvas: In Canvas you can allow students to participate in online collaborations and discussions:
  1. Zoom: This video conferencing tool includes a variety of features such as chat, screen sharing, annotation tools, and breakout rooms for small group discussions. You have the option to record and it is fully integrated into Canvas.
  1. Panopto: Use this tool to record a voice-over-powerpoint lecture to share via Canvas or over email. Students can then discuss together and take notes within the video, allowing the instructor to see the engagement, as well as respond. 
  1. VoiceThread: VoiceThread allows for conversations around and within media (e.g., images, video clips, documents, and slide presentations). Students and instructors can comment on posted content using text, audio, video, or drawings.
  1. Google Apps: Google Apps include Gmail, Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Slides, Google Forms allow students to work and discuss together either at the same time or at different times. 

Further information for hosting successful online discussions can be found here:

Furthermore, we are constantly updating our site for instructional continuity here for further training, tools, and to answer any of your questions at https://instructionalcontinuity.georgetown.edu/

Contact us at cndls@georgetown.edu