Cohort Setup: Breakout Groups

This article describes what a breakout group is and how they are used in some courses, as well as how to add cohort members to breakout groups.

What is a breakout group?

A breakout group is a subset of a cohort that completes one or more activities together as part of a course. Examples of breakout group activities include meeting as a group to discuss a case study or work through an exercise, as well as using a Discussion activity in the platform to have a dialogue about a particular topic.

The recommended size of a breakout group is about 6-10 learners, with the ideal size around 8 learners. Too large of a group and learners won’t get the value that comes from a small group, and scheduling a meeting will be too difficult. Too small of a group and learners won’t get the value of a breakout group if a few members can’t make the scheduled group meeting. 

Note: Not all signature courses involve breakout group activities.

Learn more about the creation of breakout group activities when building a course, including a Breakout Group Discussion as well as Private or Public Breakout Group Results activities.

How are breakout groups constructed?

There are several ways to construct your breakout groups, each with its own merits, but it’s ultimately up to you how the groups are constructed. You can randomly assign learners to a breakout group, for example. You can also go through your cohort roster and distribute learners from each division in the company (or use another data field) between all of the breakout groups. 

Another option is to group people from the same region together to make scheduling a group meeting easier. If the course is part of a larger program, consider whether or not you want to keep the same groups throughout the whole program or change the groups each course. There are many considerations when constructing breakout groups and you can consult your Customer Success representative for additional help.

How to add cohort members to breakout groups

  1. To begin, navigate to the Breakout Groups page.
  2. Next, add breakout groups that will later be filled with learners. You can determine the number of groups to include based on the size of your cohort and the size you’d like for each group. Add a breakout group by entering the group name (e.g. Group 1 or EMEA) under “Add a Breakout Group” and clicking Add Group. Repeat the process for each breakout group. 
  3. You are now ready to add cohort members into each group. All learners will begin in the Unassigned Users section of the left side of the page. You can add learners individually to a group by clicking on their name and then dragging and dropping them into their group. When a learner has been added, you will see the number of members on the right increase by one. Tip: To randomly assign cohort members into breakout groups, click the “Auto Shuffle Members into Groups” button at the top of the page.
  4. To edit a group name or remove a member, click on the pencil icon to the right of the group name or click on the group you’d like to edit. To remove a member, drag and drop them from the group into the Unassigned Users section or into another group. To delete a group, click on the trash icon to the right of the pencil icon. 

Tip: To see all of the breakout groups expanded so you can see each group’s members, click the Toggle All Groups button in the top right corner of the page.

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