Tip Sheets | Home   

WebQuests (ICT Integration)

Tips for managing WebQuests in the classroom


WebQuests are ideal for teachers to use when they are planning engaged learning sessions for their classes. They are usually ready for use, with good ideas for collaborative learning. Does this mean that all WebQuests lessons will be a guaranteed success?

What can teachers do, or not do, that will quite likely sabotage the best-designed WebQuest? Are there tips that you could give a teacher to ensure that a WebQuest lesson is successful and enjoyable for the learners?

The Task

You are part of a team of four educators that has been invited by Microsoft Partners in Learning to develop a support brochure for teachers who will be using WebQuests. This brochure will be printed and packaged with the Partners in Learning CD. It must provide, in a nutshell, the most essential tips for classroom management of WebQuests. Owing to the lack of space you will have to choose your words very carefully and ensure that you provide only the most important and useful tips.

You can use Microsoft Word or Microsoft Publisher to produce this brochure.

The Process

  • Allocate roles to each of your team members.
  • Each member should first read his/her role description.
Role 1 - Organiser

Your role is to research and provide the essential tips for good classroom organisation before, during and after a WebQuest. What should the teacher have prepared? What kind of teaching and classroom management style do you think is most conducive to successful WebQuests. What behavioural issues are likely to arise and how does one prevent or deal with these?


» What is project-based learning?
» Classroom management - ideas from various teachers on classroom management.
» Classroom management, student conduct, effective praise guidelines.
Role 2 - Social Engineer

Your role is to research and provide the essential tips for the formation of groups. What is the best group composition? Should friends be in the same group? Should groups have mixed abilities? Should groups be formed randomly? How does the teacher decide this and how does the teacher proceed to form groups?


» What is project-based learning?
» Forming groups.
Role 3 - Assessor

Your role is to research and provide the essential tips for assessing groups. Teachers have a good idea about what to assess during WebQuests, but are not sure about how to assess individuals in the group and the groups as a whole fairly.


» What is project-based learning?
Role 4 - Processor

Your role is to research and provide the essential tips for managing the classroom process during WebQuests. These tips are focused specifically at managing the WebQuest and not the organisation of the classroom generally. Is there an ideal process for working through a WebQuest?


» What is project-based learning?
» WebQuests: An introduction and management tips.
  • Meet as a group and discuss the task.
    • Clearly state what each member understands by the task and develop a consensus on what is required.
    • Each group member should explain how he/she will be contributing to this task and the team should endorse this role.
  • Split into separate roles and collaborate with other groups in the class to research and clarify the essential tips in each section of the brochure.
    • You should use this collaboration for finding information and discussing.
    • You do not need to reach a consensus with other group members.
  • Return to your groups and propose specific content for the brochure. Explain why you have chosen this content.


Criteria Description 4 3 2 1
Collaboration across groups You have cooperated well with your partners in other groups during the jigsaw sessions. You were prepared to listen to their ideas and share your ideas. You developed a good cooperative strategy to work efficiently in the restricted time.        
Communication skills with the group You participated well in your group. You were a good listener and expressed your ideas effectively. You were willing to work hard at reaching a consensus.        
Synthesis of information You were able to extract the most relevant information from the resources for the purpose of this brochure.        
Accuracy of content The information that you placed in the brochure was concise, accurate and sound advice.        
Presentation of brochure The brochure's parts form a logical unit together and the final presentation is professional and devoid of errors.        


Congratulations! You have produced a very useful resource for all WebQuest teachers. At the same time you probably have learnt new things about both participating in and managing WebQuests yourself.

© Bernie Dodge, 1999