ERIC Number: ED204821
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-May
Group-Hate: A Negative Reaction to Group Work.
Sorensen, Susan M.
Despite the fact that group work in speech communication classes is assigned to aid students in learning to work productively in groups, there are many people who avoid it and who express a sincere dislike for any group activity in the academic setting. This negative initial reaction toward group work was studied in order to compile a taxonomy of attitudes toward group work as expressed by students in a basic speech course. At the beginning of the course, 208 students wrote brief papers concerning their attitudes toward group work. Information from the papers was categorized in terms of the student's overall reactions to group work, the types of groups the student had participated in, and the student's attitude toward those groups. The most common reasons given for disliking group work clustered around four areas: grades, interpersonal considerations, poor outcomes of group work, and group organization factors. At the end of the course, interviews were conducted with 44 of the students to determine if their attitudes had changed. Only two students reported an attitude change--both from negative to positive. The findings suggest that group problem solving methods and related methods of group management should be taught as a means of reducing students' negative initial reactions to group work. (FL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Communication Association (Minneapolis, MN, May 21-25, 1981).