Building diverse teams (randomly)

The Picture card method allows for maximum team communication in groups that are selected randomly.

This method allows for maximum communication between participants in groups that were selected randomly and maintains each participant’s active role. It tests understanding and explanation skills.

Preparation: Mark picture cards with letters A B C D and cut into 4 strips, see below.

Phase 1
Groups are told to blindly choose a part of a picture card and then form groups with the same letters, for example all the As / Bs (see the picture).

The teacher has prepared tasks printed out and distributes them to the groups. Students must work as a group to perform the set task, each group having a different task. The teacher monitors progress and supports as needed.

Phase 2
The students now form new groups, by coming together to form the picture card that their pieces belong to, and in these groups have to explain their findings from phase 1 to the new group members.

Advantages: This approach includes everybody without selection. Students work together to research, debate and solve but they also have to present and listen to others in a final phase.

Picture card example

Source: Mathew Docherty, University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria