Collaborative learning refers to a teaching methodTeaching methods indicate how you want to work and specify activities for the teacher and the student. The choice of a teaching method is related to the predetermined objectives and the context. that you can use as a teacher which revolves around a group of students working on a concrete task. Collaborative learning is not new. For many decades, techniques such as role playing, group discussions and group work are being used.

Collaborative leaning differs from learning together. Collaborative learning is a teaching method, meaning that you, as a teacher, create the conditions to make collaborative learning possible. By contrast, learning together refers to spontaneous actions of your students to learn together.

Successful collaborative learning is based on the following five principles:

  • positive mutual dependencethe team members are dependent on each other to successfully complete the group task
  • individual accountabilityeach team member is responsible for his/her share in or contribution to  the group process
  • social skillscollaborative learning demands social skills from the student
  • evaluation of the group processthe process of working together is part of the collaborative learning assessment
  • direct interactionteam members have the possibility to exchange their ideas with each other. Moreover, this interaction is visible for each team member