Primary Wall

In his hugely popular book, Pure Genius – Building a Culture of Innovation, author and educator Don Wettrick discusses the keys to bringing innovation and collaboration into the classroom. An important part of this process, the education technology revolution has been fantastic in helping teachers get closer to students and communicate with them, but another commonly overlooked benefit has been its ability to get students collaborating successfully and productively with one another. Check out these great tools for electronic student collaboration…


Whiteboard: Collaborative Drawing

1. Whiteboard: Collaborative Drawing (app)

This app is a really neat way to encourage collaboration in a fun and productive way. Whiteboard is the number one collaborative drawing app for smartphones and tablets and has over 8 million downloads to date.

As well as being a great canvas for digital creations, the huge benefit comes from how simple it is to work on sketches together. Wirelessly connect two iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad devices over a local Wi-Fi network and your students will be collaborating in no time.


2. Debate Graph

Student Collaboartion - Debate GraphThis fantastic tool enables students to participate in exciting, illuminating collaborative debate or group brainstorming. Students can work together to build graphs and visual representations of complex topics and arguments, creating subject-maps and spider graphs to clearly show different contributors’ ideas and input. The graphs can then be saved for future reference or to be marked by a teacher or presented to other groups of students later on.



3. Primary Wall

Student Collaboartion - Primary WallPrimary Wall is a web-based sticky note tool designed for schools that allows teachers and students to work together in real-time, adding sticky notes to a group ‘wall’ like a pinboard. Simple, fast and user-friendly, the site also hosts other great collaborative tools for students working together to create projects, with group writing and drawing tools also available. Great for creating class brainstorms or inviting students to create a collaborative mood-board with lots of different ideas or quotes. Resulting masterpieces can be saved and referred back to later!


Talkboard by Citrix

4. Talkboard (app)

Talkboard may be the latest indispensable tool for illustrating collaborative ideas on the fly.” — Forbes

It might be a pretty big claim, but as an App Store Best of 2013 for smart productivity, Talkboard is an excellent free way to get your students collaborating on the iPad. With Talkboard you can visually express ideas and invite friends and colleagues from across the room or around the world. Created by Citrix, one of the world’s leading software and communication companies, this tool is perfect for both fun and serious collaboration.


Student Collaboartion - WordPress5. WordPress

WordPress is a popular, easy-to-use tool for creating a class blog, a great way for students to collaborate together on an online project. Use the platform to encourage students to band together and take it in turns to create blog posts, whether they are individual articles on a particular theme, new installments in a story where each contributor adds a new chapter, or even different points of view in an academic argument!


What are your favourite sites for helping student collaboration online? Let us know in the comments box below!


Image 1 courtesy of Flickr, Image 2 courtesy of Flickr, misocrazy. Image 3 courtesy of Flickr, Fernando Amaro Caamaato


    1. Thanks for the hot tip Maggie. Haven’t used Crocodoc, but it looks like something that would come in useful in many ways. I look forward to digging a bit deeper!

  1. H, my name is Yuval and I am one of the cofounders of ShowDocument. VeriShow is an upgrade of ShowDocument. For a great user experience you should try that platform too.

  2. Docs9 is a much better alternative, and best of all it’s the easiest, simplest to use in my experience so far. It offers a much better, lightweight alternative to Office 365.

    I could have a live presentation ready to share in a matter of seconds. The coolest part was everything from Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, Excel to OpenOffice Writer, Impress, Calc even Google Docs is handled in the exact same way. Because this works purely in a browser, most of my participants enjoyed watching my presentation on their iPhones, Androids, even iPads. Few yet were impressed they could use their old browsers, and for first time had nothing to setup or configure at all!

  3. is also an impressive tool. Businesses like CPA’s and Law are using it and I think College students are also using it for their projects.

  4. I feel for my group assignment 2 I would ask if my members would like to chose between either the Debate Graph or WebPress. I enjoyed Debate Graph as you can see you ideas unfold. WebPress looks great also but I think one could get easily off track with all the different tools available.

  5. I would recommend,

    Riffpad fosters information flow within the secure environment of an enterprise
    space. It allows dispersed teams to work together seamlessly and productively.

    Unlike bloated “full featured” software that is difficult to
    comprehend, it is designed to be simple to learn and use with a vastly reduced
    learning curve. This makes Riffpad the ideal collaborative platform for small

  6. In addition to above, students may also collaborate using tools like webex, gotomeeting, gomeetnow, R-HUB web conferencing servers etc.

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