Traditional forms of group assessment in business school
Traditionally, business schools have known to adopt the ‘teacher knows best’ way of group assessment in which the teacher holds the reins of power in the assessment process. This commonly used method of assessment includes the teacher allocating a shared group grade based on the end result of the project. This manner of grading is deemed to be problematic for two reasons . Firstly, in teacher-only assessments it is difficult to assess the level of individual contribution. This is associated with the second problem which includes allowing students that put in minimal effort, known as ‘free-riders’, to benefit from the same grade that is allocated to the rest of the group members who might have put in a bit more effort .
FeedbackFruits offers a solution to both problems with a tool called Group Member Evaluation. This tool facilitates teamwork dynamics, by allowing students to evaluate each other’s contributions anonymously against a set of criteria set by the teacher. The teachers oversee the feedback being given and intervene when needed. This tool also allows group grades to be personalized based on individual contributions. It does this through an algorithm that compares ratings each student receives with the average of the group. Based on this ratio, a grade is calculated which reflects their individual contribution. By doing this, overachievers are rewarded and underachievers penalized.
“ By doing this, overachievers are rewarded and underachievers are penalized. ”
By quantifying the value to individual contribution of group members this way, free-riding is eliminated. Moreover, supplementing group member evaluation with self-assessment can help students spot discrepancies between how they view their own efforts and how they are perceived by others. Which further improves their performance in future group projects. In this sense, the tool is greatly valuable for business schools as students will acquire the skill of taking accountability in teams, that as mentioned prior, is a noteworthy skill to possess as business executives.
This functionality (group contribution factor) was co-created with Tiffany Gunning from our EdTech DoTank partner, Deakin University.
Teamwork should be looked forward to and not feared by students. The Group Member Evaluation tool not only offers fair and accurate assessment for group work but additionally allows students to be active and engaged participants in the learning process. This pedagogy allows students to gain a deeper grasp of fundamental concepts while also allowing them to cultivate skills which they will eventually utilize in the workplace and in life.
 LaBeouf, J. P., Griffith, J. C., & Roberts, D. L. (2016). Faculty and Student Issues with Group Work: What is Problematic with College Group Assignments and Why?. Journal of Education and Human Development, 5 (1). Source
 Gueldenzoph, L.E & May, G.L. (2002). Collaborative Peer Evaluation: Best Practices for Group Member Assessments. Business Communication Quarterly, Volume 65, Number 1, March 2002, pages 9-20 2002 by the Association for Business Communication
 Weldy, T., & Turnipseed, D. (2010). Assessing and Improving Learning in Business Schools: Direct and Indirect Measures of Learning. Journal Of Education For Business, 85(5), 268-273. Source
 Verheijen, A. (2020). Eliminating free-riding in group work. Source