BHS-240: Group Dynamics and Process

BHS-240: Group Dynamics and Process. This course will give you a broad understanding of group development stages, group dynamics, group counseling theories, and group work ethical standards. This course also looks at theoretical approaches to group work. The course also looks at how group members can grow and develop.

June is a member of a stay-at-home moms’ support group. She admits to the group that she felt bad about yelling at her toddler the night before because he wouldn’t pick up his toys. One of the mothers offers her encouragement and support. The other two mothers remain silent and appear uninterested. June feels betrayed and judged by the other two mothers. She regrets telling her story and joins the rest of the group in silence.

The preceding story depicts several important group dynamics that have an impact on each individual in the group as well as the group as a whole. Every member of society is a part of a group, whether it is at work, in the military, at school, in social groups, in sports, or in other ways.

Understanding group dynamics is a more complex process than simply summarizing the individual characteristics of each group member, according to systems theory. It is the characteristics of each group member, how each group member’s actions affect the group, and how these group interactions affect each group member are the best ways to understand group dynamics. This creates a cyclical and reciprocal feedback loop that affects all group members and their relationships at the same time.

The success or failure of a group depends upon so many factors. Group member resources, structure (group size, group roles, group norms, and group cohesiveness), group processes (the communication, group decision making processes, power dynamics, conflicting interactions, etc.) and  and group tasks (complexity and interdependence).

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