Collaborate (a little)
For this assignment, I met in a Google Hangout with Sarah, D’Arcy, and Linnea. These were the original 10 statements we were asked to discuss/revise:
- We should have a high degree of tolerance for group members who are late to synchronous meetings or do not attend due to other obligations.
- Creating friendships and completing the group task are equally important.
- Criticizing other group members should be avoided.
- All group members should have identical goals and reasons for being involved.
- Majority rule is the best method of group decision making.
- If one group member is not pulling his or her weight, the other group members should confront that person together.
During the Google hangout, we went item-by-item and discussed whether or not we agreed with each statement. These were our final statements, which D’Arcy made into an infographic.
- The most important goal for a group in this class would be to complete the stated task(s).
- Groups are most productive when a leader steps forward to run meetings and allocate tasks.
- Group members should do everything in their power to attend scheduled synchronous meetings on time.
- While a good working relationship is important, completing the group task is the most important priority.
- Group members should respectfully engage in constructive criticism when appropriate.
- Resolving small conflicts in a professional manner will help prevent conflict escalation and group dysfunction.
- Whenever possible, group members should attempt to reach a consensus to make a decision. When that’s not possible or time is limited, relying on the leader’s guidance or majority rule is acceptable.
- Group members should be held accountable for their contributions to the group.
- Depending upon the learning objective, groups should be evaluated as a whole, as individuals, or some combination of the two.
Thinking about the thinking
What did you find most challenging? It was somewhat challenging to find a time that worked with four very different schedules. I am also on the east coast, so meeting at 6pm AK time meant it was 10pm my time. That really wasn’t a problem for me- I just realized I probably don’t do my best work at 10pm!
What questions remain? I am curious to see how these statements are used later on in the class. I would also be curious to hear how/why other students came to different conclusions about the statements (as compared to our group).
Why do you think I required it? I think it was a great opportunity to practice collaboration. I liked having the flexibility to complete it in a small group instead of partners, too, as that changed the dynamic in terms of collaboration and dialogue.
What advice would you give a student if you could travel into the future and give them advice? Plan ahead! Too, I’d recommend using whatever tools you have available / are comfortable with. D’Arcy set up a Doodle poll to coordinate a time to meet, and Sarah set up a Google Hangout link. Using both of these tools helped streamline our coordination and made completing the assignment that much easier.