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There will not be a specific list of references developed for each Trigger. The ‘Indicative Resources’ set out below would be useful reading for all triggers. Part of the overall learning experience implicit in PBL is the development of skills that will facilitate access to learning resources throughout your future professional career.

By the end of this module students should be able to:

1.Demonstrate an understanding of the relationships between an individual, the groups in which the individual lives and works, and wider society;

2.Demonstrate self-awareness and be able to reflect on own group experience in a systematic way;

3.Understand the importance of the psychosocial context to examine the health of the whole person;

4.Demonstrate knowledge of team skills and be able to apply knowledge to understanding group dynamics. 

Communication Challenges

In my group, we were able to discuss over a period of four weeks meeting one day in each week. For each week we tackled the trigger questions one by one. My team members were required to do extensive research on each trigger question before the meeting then we would meet to discuss, and each team member was expected to contribute.

One significant aspect of group dynamics that our group faced was communication. I noticed that most members of our group had poor communication skills and this significantly affected the other team members and how they behaved (Forsyth 2018). This was evident as seen below using Gibbs' (1988) Reflective cycle (Gibbs 1988).

Here, we began by outlining the key focus in our group. For example in trigger 1, my principal focus was on why Kyle has excluded in school and the statistics of exclusion in Liverpool. Initially, we had decided that everyone was to choose a key focus then we will discuss it when we meet. However, in week one of the meeting I got into an argument with another team member, and we were not able to communicate with each other to find a solution. The disagreement was because we had both focused on the same thing. As I tried to talk to the member to find a solution they kept on interrupting me and raising their voice. (Levi 2017).

Also in week two when we were tackling the second trigger question the communication was poor (Brown 2018). Because of the previous disagreement I had with my team member, the tension was still existent, and the group had divided into two, those who were on my side and those on my team member's party. I was hesitant to talk because I did not want to be shouted at or interrupted and when I decided to speak I did not maintain eye contact. This was also evident in the other team members.

By the time we were meeting in week three to discuss the third trigger question which was why Kim was smoking and drinking there was no communication at all. I tried to talk to the team member that I had argued with on day one, but they would not listen and kept on writing as I spoke. All the other team members were also doing their things during the meeting, and when the team leader was speaking, I could not hear because of a lot of giggling and talking from the other team members. In week four, we did not meet at all.

In week one when I disagreed with my team member, I felt ambushed. This is because whenever I tried to speak to defend myself the teammate interrupted me and I could not get a word in. The group member was also shouting at me when talking, and this made me feel threatened.

In week two I did not feel like attending the meeting but decided to as an effort to show I was still willing. However, the meeting did not go as planned and this made me feel the tension in the room. I thought of speaking to the group member aside so that we can resolve our conflict thus be able to work together but I was too afraid. I feared that they would shout at me again, so I decided not to.

Conflict Resolution

In week three I was against going, but one of my teammates persuaded me. During the meeting, I was uneasy and uncomfortable. I felt excluded from the group because everyone was doing their things and very few spoke to me. When the team leader was talking, I was not listening but instead thinking about how I will approach the person I conflicted. Once I contacted the person, and they ignored me I felt hurt and decided I will not make it an effort again. In week four I did not go at all because I did not feel like

The good thing that I was able to achieve in my group was being able to research the triggers before the discussion. This was very helpful since even though we were not able to discuss during the meetings, I had already learned something from the research. I also liked that I was able to attend all three meetings despite the conflict that existed. This made me realize that I could work in a hostile environment if I wanted to. Another thing that I considered good was my effort to try and solve the conflict. I tried this twice, and in both instances, it did not work but, I liked that I made an effort (Pinto et al. 2016)

On the other hand, the bad aspects were I did not like that I was always being interrupted in week one. Also when I was being disrupted, I should have kept quiet instead of talking because this made the other person shout so that they could overpower me. I also noticed that in week three I was not making any eye contact and this was an example of poor communication skills. The other group members were also doing it. I also decided not to go on week four which was bad behavior on my part because I value good attendance. Although we did not meet at all, I did not make any effort of reaching out to meet (Kumar 2018).

Analysis

In week one when I argued I think that it was because of a conflict of interest. The teammate and I both had the same benefits and this caused tension which lead to the argument. During the discussion, I saw that none of us possessed any communication skills which made the situation even worse.

In week two I think that the tension still existed because the conflict was not solved. Also, the pressure existed because the group was divided into two. I feel like the team members did this because they felt the need to pick a side. The teammate I argued with was adamant to solve the conflict, and I think this is because of pride. The person was too proud to admit that they were wrong (Wellensteen 2015).

In week three I felt that we were not effective as a team because of the conflict present. These took a toll on the other members and thus were not able to work effectively. This is why they were on their phones and reading their books (Singer 2018)

Analysis

Conclusion

In week one when I found out that my interests conflicted with that of another teammate, I would have set them aside and talked to them calmly about what to do next. I would have even offered to work together because we are on the same team and our goals are the same. I would also not continue speaking when they were interrupting me so that I can listen and see where they are coming from (Linton et al. 2016)

In week two I would maintain eye contact with the other teammates not only when I am speaking but also when they are speaking. This would show that am very confident and can present myself accurately even when am in a dangerous situation. I would also approach the other party and try to solve conflict to reduce the tension in the group. If this did not work, I would speak in front of the whole group and apologize to the person in question even though they did not want to talk to me. This way I can relieve the tension in the group (Dolan 2017).

Another way that I could have solved this was to approach the teammate outside of the meetings. I would have reached out to them on the phone and try to set up a meeting to resolve the conflict. This way, when we come for our next team meeting the tension is raised and no more conflict.

Action

If the same situation happens again in another group, I will know what exactly to do. First I will know that interruption is not effective and always to let other people speak. I will know that listening is an essential communication skill because it allows one to know the other person's view (Cottrell 2011).

Second I will know that in case of a conflict it is better to solve it immediately. This is because dragging it along affects the group dynamics of the team and will thus lead to poor performance of the group in general.

Third I will know that eye contact is a critical communication skill. Maintaining eye contact is effective in ensuring that your message is delivered and it boosts one's confidence as well.

Fourth I will be able to learn how to solve conflict through the communication skills that I have learned such as listening and maintaining eye contact.

Lastly, I will know that it is essential to put the needs of the group first as opposed to one's personal needs. In this case, I would solve the conflict so that the group can work together in achieving its goal. Thus I would set my differences aside and expect the other teammate to do the same to work together (Johnson and Johnson 2012).

In conclusion, group dynamics of a team is essential to the overall success of the team. As seen above the Gibbs'(1988) Reflective Cycle explains the group process from the description to the action in detail and how one can use this to reflect on the performance of the group and the actions to take to ensure the team's goals are met (Gibbs 1988).

References

Brown, N.W., 2018. Psychoeducational groups: Process and practice. Routledge.

Cottrell, S. (2011) Critical thinking skills: developing effective analysis and argument. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. [R]

Dolan, R., 2017. Branding yourself effective communication skills. FEMS microbiology letters, 364(2).

Forsyth, D.R., 2018. Group dynamics. Cengage Learning.

Gibbs, G., 1988. The reflective cycle. Kitchen S (1999) An appraisal of methods of reflection and clinical supervision. Br J Theatre Nurs, 9(7), pp.313-7.

Johnson, D. W. & Johnson, F. P. (2012) Joining together: group theory and group skills. 11th edn. London: Pearson. [E]

Kumar, K., 2016. Reflection and its uses in Problem Solving and Personal Development.

Levi, D., 2015. Group dynamics for teams. Sage Publications.

Linton, S.J., Boersma, K., Traczyk, M., Shaw, W. and Nicholas, M., 2016. Early workplace communication and problem-solving to prevent back disability: results of a randomized controlled trial among high-risk workers and their supervisors. Journal of occupational rehabilitation, 26(2), pp.150-159.

Pinto, I.R., Marques, J.M., Levine, J.M. and Abrams, D., 2016. Membership role and subjective group dynamics: Impact on evaluative intragroup differentiation and commitment to prescriptive norms. Group Processes & Intergroup Relations, 19(5), pp.570-590.

Singer, L., 2018. Settling disputes: Conflict resolution in business, families, and the legal system. Routledge.

Wallensteen, P., 2015. Understanding conflict resolution. Sage.

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