David Carrington, a lecturer of csse3002 course, asked us to help him with ideas for the ideal team work environment.

Here is the letter

Hello David. I want to share some my group experience. Because we have
struggled a lot :)

First of all it's information sharing between group members, i don't
know any good software which will do that easily, except Google Docs,
but it has its own problems.

Second, the work place, here are some characteristics that we were looking for:

  1. Should have PCs with internet access. The number of computers
    depends on the project, but the whole idea of group work is
    discussion, so usually there should be one computer per two persons.
    Screens should be wide screen or big enough to display two documents
    side by side

  2. Should be quite, nobody should interrupt the discussion. However,
    the room shouldn't be small, other wise you will feel like in cubical

  3. Should have whiteboard to do the brainstorming.

  4. Should have table for discussions or where you can do paper work

  5. Projector or any other big screen is important for big groups
    discussions, unnecessary for 4 people or less. The screen should be on
    enough distance, so it is easy to switch your view between monitor and

  6. Everybody should easily move between each member, everybody should
    see each other, so the sound shouldn't be block by anything.

Alright, please check the attached file.
A and B the first ideas
C and D are the final sketches.
That's will be my ideal work space. Numbers on picture C mean the
priorities to use this computer, 1 is the highest. Computer 1 will
have control of projector. Thick black lines are projector screen and

The advantages of C approach:
Everything above
Discussion area provided, group can discuss at table
No space wasted
Everybody can see each other, and see what s/he doing
Good for different sizes of groups, 2-10 people
The area gives the sense to each member, of team work, as nobody is separated
Many work spaces can be putted together, as you can see on D. some
noise protection should be between them, like soft walls, but not
complete walls