Think of the groups of which you have been a member. Which of these groups have had (or have) an influence on how you see yourself? How have they shaped your identity? How do you think you would be different if you had not been a member of this/these group(s)? What elements of the group made it so impactful?
Journal 5: Cinematic Small Group Consensus
Instructions: For this two-part assignment your task is to select a movie that revolves around a small group having to come to a decision on a specific task. Some ideas are: Twelve Angry Men, Lifeboat, Witness for The prosecution, Stalag 17, Glengarry Glen Ross, Memphis Belle, or one of your choosing (you will have to justify your choice, so choose wisely.)
- The first part of this assignment is to summarize how your elected movie fits the parameters. For example, the classic film Twelve Angry Men revolves around the efforts of eleven members of a jury in a murder trial to convince one member to change hi “not guilty” vote to “guilty.” The film dramatizes many aspects of small-group discussion covered in the textbook, including the kinds and functions of leadership, interpersonal conflict, hidden agendas, and the creation of consensus. (Note: if you choose Twelve Angry Men your synopsis should differ than this example.)
- The second part of this assignment puts you into the role of a consultant to the group in your movie and write them a letter critiquing their group processes and offering suggestions for improvement. The purpose is for you to demonstrate your knowledge of group processes by evaluating a group decision making and applying the concepts of small group communication presented in the textbook. Your letter should be 500-750 words in length and formatted according to the APA style. Consider the following questions in your analysis:
- What are the strengths of the group portrayed in the movie?
- What are the weaknesses of the group?
- What kinds of leadership does the group demonstrate?
- What role do hidden agendas play in the deliberations of the group?
- If you were the leader of the group, what would you do to eliminate some of its interpersonal conflicts?
- Who are the most effective communicators in the group? The least effective? Why?
- How could the group improve its decision making and problem solving?