I am writing a blog series about my personal perspectives as a Master’s student on the role that technology plays in Education. Click here for Parts I, II, III, IV, V, VI and VII.

This weeks is Microsoft’s Teams first year anniversary. I am taking this occasion to write a few blogs on how it has been an absolute game-changer; a huge bonus in driving groups or teams’ projects to the next level! Here I explore how we are using it at UCL to deliver a professional Client Project as part of our Master of Public Administration (MPA) 

Group projects can be some of the most tedious experiences in life! Whether you are a student or an experienced professional, you may well shudder in fear at the idea of having to gather different individuals in one room to brainstorm, design, develop and deliver a new project.  

Part of my MPA is delivering a Client Project to a real-world organisation, taking research from a Science, Technology or Engineering field and transforming it into recommendations for action. Using Microsoft Teams effectively has really allowed us to increase collaboration and coordination. 

Create your team 

Ready. Set. GO! Once you know who your team members will be, log in into your Office 365 account and click on Microsoft Teams:

And then click on add team at the bottom of the page and…

Get ready to invite your team members! 

Once you’ve selected those who you want to invite from your organisation, you can create different Channels 

My recommendation is to straight away integrate the Office 365 apps that you usually use in your day-to-day work: OneNote, OneDrive and others – by clicking this plus icon:  

 

And choosing your most used Office 365 Apps: 

 

This will create “tabs” in your Teams channel where you can drag and drop all your Excel, Word, Forms files.  

Alternatively, just start a conversation and upload a file (any type of file, from videos to PDFs):

All your files will appear in the “Files” section, just like in your OneDrive! 

Teams is a great way to collaborate using elements of social media, such as tagging individuals, having conversations and uploading & sharing content. As most real work gets done in groups, the challenges of communication, co-ordination and alignment can be reduced by using tools that better resemble face-to-face interaction.   

Next steps 

Now that you know how to get started with Microsoft Teams, stay tuned for the next few blogs on how to set your project’s outcome based on the problem it will solve, and how to focus and plan your group activities.

Educators need to feel confident about these apps to implement them in their teaching curricula. Why not get in touch with Hable to strategically discuss with your senior team how to unlock the whole potential of Microsoft Teams, and design enhanced learning experiences for your students.

If you have any specific topics that you would like me to cover in the future, drop me a line at oiurcovich@hable.co.uk or continue the conversation on Twitter 

 

 Oli Iurcovich