GMS 6945 – Team Science

2024 Fall semester, Thursdays, 1:55-2:45 pm (UF period 7), room R5-265

Course Director:  Wayne T. McCormack, Ph.D., CG-72K, 294-8334, mccormac at
Course schedule subject to change before the semester begins.
To register for this course, please contact Christian A. Rodriguez.

Date Topic Assignment
Aug 22 Intro to the Science of Team Science DISC & EQi Assessments (due Aug 26)
Aug 29 Preparing for Team Science – Are You Ready? 1st Draft Vision/Mission Statement (due Sep 10)
Sep 5 The Leadership Challenge & Shared Leadership
Sep 12 Team Leadership – Which Style Works Best When?
Sep 19 Strategic Team Science
Sep 26 Building a Research Team – Who and Why? 2nd Draft Vision/Mission Statement (due Oct 1)
Oct 3 Conflict Management
Oct 10 Collaboration Plans & Authorship Agreements Draft Collab Plan (due Oct 22)
Draft Author Agreement (due Nov 12)
Oct 17 Managing & Monitoring Research Teams Draft Team Monitoring Reflection (due Nov 5)
Oct 24 Team Evaluation Draft Evaluation Plan (due Oct 29)
Collaboration Plan Peer Feedback (due Nov 5)
Oct 31 Evaluation Plan Oral Reports Final Written Report (DOC due Dec 4)
Nov 7 Team Monitoring Discussion Final Written Report (PPT due Nov 19)
Nov 14 No Class
Nov 21 Final Team Oral Reports
Nov 38 No Class – Thanksgiving Holiday

Course Description:  Addressing today’s complex research and societal problems requires integration of specialized knowledge bases and cross-disciplinary collaboration. This course offers practical guidance about engaging in Team Science to pursue complex research questions, work effectively with team members, and assess team performance in order to produce high impact research outcomes.

Course Format and Outline:  Readings will be posted at the course Canvas site.  In addition to lectures and class discussions about team science principles, strategies, and evidence of effectiveness, students will be expected to identify a current research team of their choice that they are involved in, and practice team science strategies during the semester.  Assignments will include preparation of a written team vision and mission statement, collaboration plan and authorship agreements, oral presentation of your plan, and an oral report about a team debriefing experience.  Students will be expected to attend every class and actively participate in discussions.  Class sessions will combine lecture and small group discussion.

Learning Objectives:   At the end of this course students should be able to:

  • Describe how team science has influenced research
  • Differentiate between multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary, and transdisciplinary research
  • Describe factors to consider when deciding whether join an interdisciplinary research team
  • Discuss factors to consider and steps to take when evaluating others as potential collaborators
  • Develop a research team vision and mission statement
  • Develop a collaboration plan for a new research team
  • Develop an authorship agreement for a research team
  • Demonstrate an understanding of meta-cognitive processes important for team functioning
  • Recognize and resolve conflict that arises during the life cycle of a scientific team
  • Use strategies for team evaluation and self-correction
  • Describe factors that contribute to the success of a scientific team


The assignments for this course are designed for each student to put into practice the team science principles and best practices being discussed in class.  The team may be a close collaborator or their research lab group.

Team Name, Vision/Mission Statement, Description

The final product will be a concise statement about your overall goal(s), what motivates your team, and what kind of research culture your team will have.  Your final Vision/Mission statement will be incorporated into each of your oral reports and your final written report.

Collaboration Plan

See October 10 session handout for more detail.

  1. Rationale for Team Approach and Team Configuration
  2. Collaboration Readiness
  3. Technological Readiness
  4. Team Functioning
  5. Communication & Coordination
  6. Leadership, Management, and Administration
  7. Conflict Prevention and Management
  8. Training
  9. Quality Improvement Activities
  10. Budget/Resource Allocation

Authorship Agreement

If your team is not currently planning a manuscript, consider the first (or next) manuscript your team plans to write.  See October 10 session handout for more detail.

Team Monitoring Activity

A rubric for Team Dimensional Training will be provided, which will be used to guide a team discussion about performance of the team.  The following four dimensions will be discussed:

  • Information Exchange
  • Communication Delivery
  • Supporting Behavior
  • Team Leadership/Followership

The rubric will lead the discussion to seek suggestions for improving performance and ensure that the team agrees on goals, direction and priorities.  The outcome of this activity will not be graded – it is for your benefit as a research team.  However, you will be asked to include a written reflection about the process in your final report.  Please comment on each of the four dimensions of teamwork.  When examples are mentioned in the overall reflection, please mention which dimension they fit with.  Overall reflection about team monitoring should address these questions:

  • Which dimensions were helpful? In what ways?
  • Were any dimensions not helpful? Why did they not seem to be helpful?
  • How open or accepting were team members about participating in this activity?
  • Were there any “A-Ha!” moments? What were they?
  • Do you think this will help your continuing work relationship in your team? Why or why not?  How?

Final Report (oral presentation and written report)

Part 1 – may be written collaboratively with team members.  The intended audience for this is your team members, whether current or new.  The goal of this portion is for you to have a real working document that can support your project.  Any or all sections previously turned in may be revised further based on what else you may have learned later in the course and/or feedback you receive.

  • Team Name
  • Team Vision & Mission Statement
  • Team Description (may be partially anonymous) Briefly describe any changes to team membership since the beginning of the semester
  • Collaboration Plan
  • Authorship Agreement
  • Evaluation Plan – What to Measure (3-5 things, g., productivity, competencies) and How you will measure

Part 2 – this must be an individual effort.

  • Reflection about Team Monitoring – please see above for more information
  • Please briefly describe at least 3 important things you are committed to implementing or continuing with your team moving forward over the next one year.

Assignments and Point Values:

Aug 26     5 points     DISC & EQi Assessments, 5 points

Sep 10   10 points      Team Name, Vision/Mission Statement, Description – First Draft

Oct 1   5 points           Team Name, Vision/Mission Statement, Description – Second Draft

Oct 22   10 points       Draft Collaboration Plan (PPT)

Oct 29  5 points          Draft Evaluation Plan

Nov 5  10 points        Collaboration Plan Peer Feedback

Nov 5  10 points       Draft Team Monitoring Reflection

Nov 12  10 points     Draft Authorship Agreement (DOC)

Nov 19   15 points         Team Science Final Report, Oral Presentation (PPT)

Dec 4  20 points        Team Science Final Written Report (DOC)

Grading Rubric:

A   90-100                  B   80-82                            C   70-72                            D   60-62

A-  87-89                    B-  77-79                           C-  67-69                           F   <60

B+ 83-86                    C+ 73-76                           D+ 63-66

Attendance:  Attendance and participation are expected for all scheduled sessions.  Absences for illness, family emergencies, etc. will be excused per university policy (.  Depending on the session missed, makeup assignments may be made.  Planned absences, such as for a conference or extramural training, may be excused, but you must notify the course director in advance.  Depending on the session(s) missed, you may be asked to complete a makeup assignment or assessment either before or after your trip.

Accommodations for students with disabilities:  Students with disabilities who experience learning barriers and would like to request academic accommodations should connect with the disability Resource Center by visiting It is important for students to share their accommodation letter with the course director and discuss their access needs, as early as possible in the semester.

Required and recommended textbooks:  Lecture materials and reading assignments (both required and optional) will be provided in PDF format in Canvas.  There is no required textbook.  Required readings include:

Bennett LM, Gadlin H, Marchand C.  Collaboration & Team Science Field Guide.  NIH Publication No. 18-7660, 2018.

Hall KL, Crowston K, Vogel AL.  How to Write a Collaboration Plan.  Science of Science Toolkit.

Information on current UF grading policies:  Grades will be assigned in a manner consistent with UF policy.

Academic Honesty:  Students are expected to act in accordance with the University of Florida policy on academic integrity (see Student Conduct Code, the Graduate Student Handbook or these web sites for more details:

Cheating, lying, misrepresentation, or plagiarism in any form is unacceptable and inexcusable behavior, and will result in a score of zero for the assignment and reporting to the UF Dean of Students Office.  We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to hold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honesty and integrity.

Course Evaluation:  Students are expected to provide professional and respectful feedback on the quality of instruction in this course by completing course evaluations online via GatorEvals. Guidance on how to give feedback in a professional and respectful manner is available at Students will be notified when the evaluation period opens, and can complete evaluations through the email they receive from GatorEvals, in their Canvas course menu under GatorEvals, or via Summaries of course evaluation results are available to students at

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