Don’t let anyone dominate the session. You should keep one another on task (i.e. no visiting until you get some actual work done…), but no one should be doing all of the talking. Take turns facilitating discussion, especially if you have a dominant personality.
Be Honest with one another. If the group dynamics just aren’t there, talk to one another. Is there something you can do to fix it?
Stay on Task. It often happens that Study Groups become Social Groups. Remember, they were originally formed for studying, so this should come first.
Talk. If no one seems to be interacting well, talk to one another. Are you all introverts? No problem. Structure your time, and work within that structure. Begin by going over the past lectures, and ask questions as they come up. Pool questions together on a piece of paper, and answer them as they come up. There are many things you can do—see Sara for more suggestions. Silence can be key (think time, people!), but you don’t want it to be the only thing.
Respect Learning Styles. Some folks need to think out loud—others need quiet reflection before they want to say anything. Some want to hear information, whereas others would rather see it. Respect one another’s styles, and share what works best for you.
Don’t form a study group because you have to. Study groups are for your benefit—if you dread going and it’s something that you hate doing, you won’t get much out of it.
Arrangement. Arrange yourselves so you can make eye contact with every member of the group. Circles work very well for this!
Numbers. Try not to exceed 6 people. Not only does scheduling become an issue, but you begin presenting information to a crowd, instead of sharing knowledge in an intimate group setting.