Learning Objectives

Chapter Overview:

In this chapter, the authors approach groups in a unique way – by extending the conversation to the ways in which groups are cultures with their own rules, roles, rituals, and agendas. First, Warren and Fassett offer a grounding in group work and collaborative learning through an examination of the stages of a small group. Next, the authors present the ways in which a group forms it own culture through facts, vocabulary, rituals, rites, metaphors, and practices. Finally, the authors explore alliance building and activist work in groups. The authors present several meaningful ways to engage in alliance building when working in or out of the classroom setting.

Chapter Goals:

  • Explore cultures as emergent within and through small groups and alliances
  • Appreciate the role of communication in and about small groups and alliances
  • Identify the stages in the creation of small groups
  • Describe small groups as organizational cultures
  • Identify and develop skills for alliance-building

Chapter Outline:

  1. Groups as Emergent and Evolving
    1. Forming
    2. Storming
    3. Norming
    4. Performing
    5. Adjourning
  2. Groups as Organizational Cultures
    1. Relevant Constructs
    2. Facts and Practices
    3. Vocabulary, Metaphors, and stories
    4. Rites and Rituals
  3. Groups as Alliance-Building
  4. Public Advocacy: Skills for Alliance-Building
    1. Willingness to Engage Others
    2. Willingness to Admit Ignorance
    3. Asking Questions/Questioning Assumptions
    4. Listening
    5. Open-Mindedness
    6. Willingness to Dialogue
    7. Accepting One’s Place in the Alliance
  5. Enacting Theory