ERIC Number: ED381817
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Relinquishing Power in the Classroom: A Case Study on Self-Directed Teams in the Classroom.
Driskill, Gerald W.; Polansky, Brian
The shift toward self-directed work teams in organizations is well documented and is further underscored by models that give teamwork an integral role in accomplishing organizational goals. The traditional classroom fails to mirror such shifts when it emphasizes instructor control and decision making with a premium placed on clarity in direction, assignments, and evaluations. A study in an organizational communication classroom therefore attempted to empower students by placing them in teams charged with determining course mission, goals, structure, policies, and procedures. The major phases of this effort were as follows: (1) the distribution of a packet used to initiate the organizing process; (2) the creation and use of work teams; (3) the setting of class objectives; (4) devising a means of assessment; (5) developing a set of tasks to be researched by the various teams. In conclusion, the self-directed team approach provided a rich experiential learning environment. It fostered a mutual dependency that mirrors real life; it offered numerous opportunities for metacommunication--times when class members openly discussed their feelings about the self-directed approach; it challenged the instructor to look critically at traditional classroom setups; and it empowered students to devise their own teaching/training strategies. Shortcomings of the project were that it exposed students to only a limited number of topics and works of literature in the field and that the quality of work produced by students suffered. (Contains 15 references and five appendixes of evaluation sheets, and assessment and survey items and scores.) (TB)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Speech Communication Association (80th, New Orleans, LA, November 19-22, 1994).