Personal Awareness

Group Work vs. Teamwork

There are some difference between group work and team work. Team work is less about 'me' and more focus is on 'we.' Teams come together to work towards a common goal. Team members have a shared understanding, ownership and contribution. The image below represents the varying dynamics in a group vs. team.

Left image shows six people working towards a common goal in a group where work is coordinated by someone else. Right image shows a group of people working towards a common goal who coordinate the work themselves.

Image retrieved from Rosanna Nadeau

“With a group, the whole is often equal to or less than the sum of its parts; with a team, the whole is always greater.”

Oakley, B., Felder, R., Brent, R. and Elhhajj, I. (2004). Turning student groups into effective teams. Journal of Student-Centered Learning. Volume 2, No. 1. pp. 9-34.