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nomtastic's avatar

why are group projects (in school) so difficult? what can make them better?

Asked by nomtastic (931points) December 6th, 2006
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34 Answers

andrew's avatar
How do you mean difficult?
nomtastic's avatar
uncommitted group members. breaking of deadlines by everybody.
andrew's avatar
Ahh. Who is the group leader?
nomtastic's avatar
also, i like the feature that a box popped up when you answered.
nomtastic's avatar
there isn't really one. it was my idea, but then in the interest of not being a fascist, i let it sorta' develop organically. and at a certain point nothing moved anymore.
andrew's avatar
I think that's the difficulty right there... the one thing I've learned is that as much as organic collaboration is desirable, having a champion on the project that can lead the vision is key.
andrew's avatar
I had a theater group that died becuase we were all so committed to ensemble that no one stepped up to champion a project.
nomtastic's avatar
so then i sorta' took it back over (in a non-fascist way) and people seemed to not know what they were doing.
nomtastic's avatar
we never even had this discussion
andrew's avatar
This discussion?
nomtastic's avatar
the one about who was in charge
nomtastic's avatar
not the one you and i are having now on the fabulous new website, fluther.
nomtastic's avatar
do you ever leave your computer, andrew?
andrew's avatar
Only to audition
nomtastic's avatar
how does that make you feel?
andrew's avatar
I don't even eat any more.
nomtastic's avatar
perhaps a kugel i should send you?
andrew's avatar
tired but satisfied. Especially when the site works.
nomtastic's avatar
it works. lose the old questions, though.
andrew's avatar
Here, Join me in fluther chat.
figbash's avatar
Establishing group norms and roles at the beginning of group formation is essential...it puts everyone's expectations on the table and makes people more accountable. I can giveyou more info about the "team" stuff, if you're interested!
AriellaCG's avatar
Well,back tothe original question, I think that communication is the key..
AriellaCG's avatar
If you communicate and work with the group, the project will work much better
nomtastic's avatar
i need specifics here, kids.
figbash's avatar
A) When the group is first formed, decide who's going to be the group "leader" and get consensus on that.
figbash's avatar
B) Assess others' strong skills and decide who's going to be doing the analytical work, presentations, managing the team (keeping track of who's responsible fo which tasks and when)
figbash's avatar
C) Obviously good communication is key, but you need a structure for that
figbash's avatar
Actually--what kind of project is this?
Iwaswondering's avatar
I remember reading while in graduate school, where almost EVERYTHING was done in groups, that some people are more affiliation oriented (wanting to please and comfort others) and some are more goal oriented. If a group with a specific task (such as the completion of a school project) contains too many people who are the former, and if the majority of the people within that group put the highest premium on being friendly, it can be very uncomfortable and even disastrous. In a group, especially of the sort I just described, someone designated as leader has to be willing to take a true leadership role, which may result in people being uncomfortable at times or, at worst, angry.
Perchik's avatar
I believe that group projects only work if everyone is on the same level of comprehension. There has never been an effective method of divying work, so that every person feels like they have an equal share.
Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

For me it’s because no ever listened to me, even though they knew that I knew what i was talking about. What I wanted to do actually required some type of work to get a good grade, and god forbid the people here work in school, so I’m stuck with them doing something stupid, and getting a bad grade because of them. I hate group projects, and if everyone listened to each others’ ideas respectfully and with an open mind, it might come out well.
But who am I kidding? that won’t happen here.

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