Cmst 2064 Midterm Study Guide

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Midterm Study Guide
Fall 2012
Chapter 1: Introduction to group communication
1. *Explain the six characteristics of small groups.
a. Small number of people – 3-9 people, minimum number of people will allow you to achieve a task effectively b. Common purpose or goal – all group members are working toward the same goal c. Common experiences/sense of belonging

d. Interdependent – we all affect each other
e. Psychological bond – “us vs. them”; idea that we communicate to others that we are 1 together (insiders vs outsiders) Optimal size is 5 or 6 people (3-15) f. Interaction – communicating with each other

2. Know the difference between primary and secondary groups; know examples for each. g. Primary groups exist for social support and fellow ship; fulfill based need to be loved and belong. h. Secondary groups are groups that come together for specific goals; they reach the goal than disband. Ex. Primary – friends, family

Ex. Secondary group – study group, problem solving group, decision making, therapy groups, committees

3. Be able to recognize the six characteristics of an effective group. i. Clear elevating goal
j. Competent members
k. Unified commitment – everyone takes on the same workload l. Collaborative climate – understanding environment m. Standards of excellence – set a goal that makes us work harder n. Principled leaders

4. Know the five tips to avoid in order to have an effective group. o. Distrust of other team members
p. Fearing conflict
q. Lack of commitment to the team
r. Avoid accountability
s. Lack of focus in achieving results
i. The group is not keeping the goal in mind
5. What are the five characteristics of an effective group member? a. Experience
i. Experience managing problems and issues
ii. Those inexperienced must be willing to learn
b. Problem solving ability
iii. Able to make decisions, analyze info
iv. Indecisiveness will always hurt group
c. Openness and supportiveness
v. Honest, straight forward, open-minded
d. Action Oriented
vi. Do not wait for people to tell you
e. Positive personal style
vii. Patient, proactive, optimistic
viii. Results in a group member who does not grumble and complain 6. Explain the relational dialectics theory and types of group dialectics (not limited to the ones mentioned in lecture). t. Relational dialectics theory is the idea that we have opposing and contradictory needs in positive relationships that must be balanced (and/both relationship). Described as a both/and theory. u. Types of group dialect:

ii. conflict/cohesion – need both of these to have a successful group, iii. conforming/nonconforming – conform to the expectations of the group (time, due dates, and want group to run smoothly), some noncomforming can be distracting iv. Task and social dimensions

7. What is a system?
v. A set of interconnective parts working together to form a whole in the context of a changing environment. w. Groups are a system because members are parts
x. The behavior of one affects the whole group
8. Understand the difference between input, entropy, throughput, and output. y. Input – knowledge of other sources
v. If input decreases then the group dies
z. Entropy – wearing down process of a system. Moves toward termination {. Throughput – the process of transforming input into something (output) vi. Ex. a debate or conflict
|. Output – decisions from a debate, improved relationships 9. What is the “ripple effect” in groups?
}. Chain reaction across an entire system. A small part of a system will have a great ripple effect 10. What is the difference between synergy and negative synergy? ~. Synergy – groups often have...
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