Team Communication

Problem The VCL participants are often very inexperienced regarding effective communication within projects and therefore also less structured. Frequently they do not know the various web 2.0 tools and their possible field of application.
Framework Variety of different ICT-tools
No specific standards are set for choosing the tool. The team can decide on the tool of communication and the way of sharing files on its own. It is recommended to show participants the various types and fields of application of ICT-tools upfront the project. An overview on diverse web 2.0 tools can be found on

Example: Tools for asynchronous communication:

First and foremost there are forums in every team.

If you want to try something else, use utterli or voxopo. These are technically language forums.

Microblogging or Twitter can be tried also.

Tools for synchronous communication: There is the Ning-Chat but it is slow and it can be read by anyone.

Another classic appropriate tool is Instant Messaging like ICQ, MSN or AIM. A better service offers Meebo whereby chatting via Browser is possible. This is useful if you are working at a different computer in university or an internet café.

Skype is the most well-known. It is popular due to its group chat and conference call possibility.

DimDim and Yugma allow video conferences. With Dim-Dim you can share your documents or a whiteboard.


All documents can be uploaded in the forum but this may become confusing / very difficult.

Google Sites or PBWiki might be appropriate for joint editing / writing.

With Google docs or Zoho Writer documents can be built collaboratively. You may also try Etherpad which is a convenient / useful / applicable tool for reports or minutes.

Project management and coordination:

In terms of project management try Zoho Project or Google Docs Table.

In terms of project planning and controlling try gadget for Gantt charts.

A blog e.g. Blogger or wordpress would be conceivable as well. Naturally, the team blog could be used for this purpose.

Appointments and meetings can be organized by doodle or

However, the following requirements apply to all chosen communication tools:
The tutor or teacher in charge needs to have access to the tools. If that is not possible, minutes need to be taken so that third-parties are able to understand the team’s communication and coordination process.
References Documentation of Communication Processes
Cross-Team Communication