Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Module 3 - Collaboration

Collaboration is working together to achieve shared objectives. So it would make sense for people to gather to work towards getting each others' objectives realized. However, it is not always the case. It is not so easy to collect people around a table and have them work collaboratively although it's functionality has been proven many times.
Rheingold (2005) talks about two dilemmas: The prisoner's dilemma and the tragedy of commons dilemma. The only solution to the former dilemma seems to be the trust of both parties. As for the latter, it is about the mentality. It is about people's understanding of fairness. Ebay example stands as a good example to the solution of the prisoner's dilemma. People would purchase from sellers only if they prove to be trustworthy ones.
I see "the collaborative action" phenomenon as a solution to the issues of today's world. In Brazil, for instance, there is a huge income inequality.There are slums where people do not even have the oven to cook meal while there are shopping malls on the other side of the town where cost of a pair of shoes could be as much as three or four times the minimum monthly wage in the country.
A simple action such as "sharing" would resolve the everlasting inequality problem here in Brazil. When I say "sharing", I do not mean "sharing" literally. I am talking about the regulations that would boost the welfare of everyone in the country. Many crimes such as robbery murder would lessen and Brazil would be a more liveable place for all. Wealthy people in Brazil have so much influence on the politicians that they do not allow for laws that would favor underprivileged families to be carried out. I do not agree that people have a basic instinct to work as a group.
As for promoting collaboration to facilitate learning, PLCs (Professional Learning Communities) are very effective tools.
Green, Donovan and Bass (2010) found out the uses of students' taking laptop to schools. However, there are several factors that needs attention when implementing such programs. First, a scope and sequence has to be in place for students using their own laptops at school to contribute to learning. In addition, the school has to have a climate that encourages innovations and there has to be collaboration for the PLC to be successful.


Green, T., Donovan, L., Bass, K. (2010). Taking laptops schoolwide: A professional learning community approach. Learning and Leading with Technology 38(1), p. 12-15. 4 pp.

Rheingold, H. (2005). The New Power of Collaboration [Video file]. Retrieved from


  1. I agree that it is not easy to get individuals to work together as a group. I see this all the time when I am advocating for the adolescent boys that I foster. The worker and maybe their supervisor will agree on a course of action (i.e. services needed), and an individual in a "power position" will shut down the suggestions without even getting our version. Ideally we are all supposed to be on the same team with the children as the priority, but unfortunately there are those who do not want to work as a team or collaborate. In the end the person to lose is the child. This is the toughest part of fostering for the most part - the lack of collaborative working.

    Great post!


  2. I found your last statement to be a profound one when you stated, "the school has to have a climate that encourages innovations and there has to be collaboration for the PLC to be successful". I have found this to be so true. Often times I get students in my classroom (5th grade) who had never had the privilege of working in a group. This makes it a little hard when most of the students have done it before. As with a lot of things, some teachers are just not willing to step outside of the box to do something different.