Critical Collaboration

Module Three

Critical Collaboration requires that participants take time to reflect on how their habits of thinking, emotionally responding, and general communication have been conditioned and may even impede working with others effectively. Over time we have learned how to think and communicate about certain issues which may act as blinders and prevent us from seeing issues more fully. The activities in this module can help groups pause and critically question their way of engaging certain topics in order to improve collaboration.

At the conclusion of this module, participants will be able to:

  1. Reflect upon and question starting assumptions, sources, perspectives, and biases. 

  2. Reflect upon and better understand the role of emotional triggers in discussion. 

  3. Improve expansive thinking and comfort with multidirectional exploration and ambiguity in group discussions.  

  4. Encourage anticipatory thinking about unintended consequences.

  5. Practice generous interpretation and seek out complexity of issues.

Men Volunteering

Activity 3.1
Critical Thinking in Discussion

Activity 3.2
Critical Feeling in Discussion

Activity 3.3
Awareness of Context, Bias, & Assumptions

Activity 3.4
Developing Comfort with Ambiguity

Activity 3.5
Seeking Divergent Thinking and Understanding

Activity 3.6
Anticipating (Un)Intended Consequences

Activity 3.7
Practicing Generosity of Interpretation

Activity 3.8
Mapping Complexity


This module is structured with a series of topics explored through activities. These activities give participants a chance to experience these concepts through hands on practices, often completed in small groups. Then participants reflect on their own experiences and how these skills or tools could be useful in supporting critical collaboration in small groups and thus advance collaborative discussion.