Design and Validation of a Web-Based System for Assigning Members to Teams Using Instructor-Specified Criteria


This paper describes the design of Team-Maker, a web-based software tool that surveys students about criteria that instructors want to use when creating teams and uses a max-min heuristic to determine team assignments based on distribution criteria specified by the instructor. The Team-Maker system was validated by comparing the team assignments generated by the Team-Maker software to assignments made by experienced faculty members using the same criteria. This validation experiment showed that Team-Maker consistently met the specified criteria more closely than the faculty members. We suggest that Team-Maker can be used in combination with the Comprehensive Assessment of Team-Member Effectiveness (CATME) peer evaluation instrument to form a powerful faculty support system for team-based and cooperative learning and for a variety of research purposes. Internet access to both the Team-Maker and CATME systems is freely available to college faculty in all disciplines by selecting the “request faculty account” button at


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Richard A. Layton
Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
Terre Haute, Indiana

Misty L. Loughry
Georgia Southern University
Statesboro, Georgia

Matthew W. Ohland
Purdue University
West Lafayette, Indiana

George D. Ricco
Purdue University
West Lafayette, Indiana

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