Collaborative Class Notes

M C Morgan, 2009, 2009

For this course, I'm asking you to take notes, using the wiki, and working collaboratively in class and out.

Start a new wiki page for each group for each day. To keep things organized - and because each wiki page has to have a unique name - start at your group index page, and use this pattern to name the page: Name of Note Taker: NotesGroupDateMonth. As here:

What to do
Each class session, one student from each group is responsible for keeping that day's notes, covering what the class did and what your group did if you worked in a group. The designated notetaker can should really should take notes during class.

Each group is responsible for organizing who's drafting the notes that day. Take turns to distribute the work. Keep your schedule on your GroupPage so you know when your turn is coming, and have a backup notetaker assigned just in case.

That day's notetaker is responsible for taking the first draft of that day's notes, and should take notes on the computer during class.

ASAP after class, the day's notetaker drafts a summary of the class session. Then, between one class and the next, the other members of the group are responsible for revising those notes: adding to them, commenting, tying them to other notes and days, adding questions to address, definitions, links to material on the web, links to the notes of other days, other groups, whatever you need.

The Summary and Beyond
The day's notetaker should develop a 150 to 200 word summary of the day's activities, discussion, or exercise. Consider what main point of the class session emerged from our discussion and activities, and consider how - in what manner - the session evolved. Draw on your first notes to refine and organize this summary for your colleagues.

From there, the group will develop the day's notes in a variety of ways, depending on how the class session developed and what we did. First, others in the group can refine - add to, tighten, correct - the summary until everyone is satisfied. Then, group members might

When appropriate, or when I ask, you can include

But also develop

Sign the day's notes with
Additions and revisions:

Pages should be 500 - 750 words. Some days will be longer, some shorter. We'll look at length in relation to consensus and usefulness after the groups have posted a few sets of notes.

The idea is to create a page of notes for each day, written as one collaborative voice, on which you share consensus. This is not a matter of each person posting their own set of notes. Instead, the group creates a shared understanding of what went on and the significance of those events in the course overall.

For the first few weeks, I'll review notes from each group on over the weekend and post some feedback in the comments section. We'll look at some good notes in class. You'll have until the following Wednesday to improve and develop the notes further.

See also AsynchronousWikiNotes

Exercise originated by Jason B. Jones
Being revised from a version for CWI and CWII.

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