During this course, students will be working in groups over the network to develop a marketing plan for a virtual company on the Internet. Students work in multinational groups and use Internet-based collaboration tools. Each group chooses a product or service which can be developed on the net. The final report must have a business plan and the presentation of the company on the net using web pages
During the course students are be using the Internet-based collaboration tool, TeamWave. (http://www.teamwave.com/) TeamWave is used for both group collaboration and class discussions.
In open and distance learning, tools for collaboration have been used for several years. IRC (Internet Relay Chat) has among other tools been used. TeamWave is especially suitable for net-based collaboration, and in our opinion, TeamWave is at it's best for smaller groups in project work. It can be used both as a synchronous and asynchronous tool at the same time. Two issues demonstrating this fact are:
The project participants can meet in real time (when they are on the system, they are in a "room" where they work - there are several such rooms on the system). In that room, participants can discuss issues og draw solutions for each others while everyone are present. This is mainly by text based communication, but you can extend this with Microsoft's NetMeeting for 2-ways voice and video.
When the participants leave the room, their material will be present in the room. When one or several participants come back, they can pick up the material and continue the work. In that way, a single participant can enter the room when he/she has some time available and do their contributions between common meetings.