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PSA 335: Group Dynamics in PSA

Course Description

This course will focus on how group behavior affects organizational effectiveness, decision making, conflict resolution, and strategies for efficient group and task management. (3 credits)

Prerequisites

  • ENG 101: English Composition 1
  • ENG 102: English Composition 2
  • Background in public safety, or obtained permission from the instructor to take this course

Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:

  1. Identify and describe the various types of groups.
  2. Discuss ways to empower small groups
  3. Evaluate how group behavior affects organizational effectiveness
  4. Describe how structure, influence and power impact groups
  5. Identify ways that decisions are made in a group
  6. Describe how conflict arises and then is resolved (either properly or improperly) within a group
  7. Develop strategies for efficient group and task management
  8. Examine a personal group within which the student is involved and interpret the interworking of that group based upon materials from the text.

General Education Outcomes (GEOs)

Please check the applicable GEOs for this course, if any, by outcomes at GEO Category Search, or by subject area at GEO Discipline Search.

Course Activities and Grading

Assignments

Weight

Discussion Board Participation (Weeks 1-5)

20%

Weekly Tests and Assignments

25%

Group Project

20%

Final Research Paper

25%

Community Points

10%

Total

100%

Required Textbooks

(Available through Charter Oak’s online bookstore)

  • Forsyth, Donnelson R. (2013) Group Dynamics. 6th ed. Wadsworth Publishing. ISBN-10:113395653X or ISBN-13: 978-1133956532

Additional Required Materials

(not available through bookstore)

  • Video: 12 Angry Men (1957) Directed By: Sidney Lumet. Produced by Orion-Nova Productions.
    This film can be rented from video sources (Amazon Instant Video, or borrowed from your local library.)

Course Schedule

Week

Readings and Exercises

Assignments

1

Small Group Interaction, Circumstances and Structure

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 1 Introduction to Group Dynamics
    • Chapter 2 Studying Groups
    • Chapter 3 Inclusion and Identity
  • Read assigned chapters
  • Create an Introductory Wiki Page with responses
  • Participate in the Course Map
  • Participate in Discussion Board for this week
  • Answer Quiz over the assigned readings

2

Relevant Background Factors

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 4 Formation
    • Chapter 5 Cohesion and Development
    • Chapter 6 Structure
  • Read assigned chapters
  • Participate in Discussion Board for the week
  • Answer Quiz over the assigned reading
  • Submit writing assignment
  • Complete weekly assignment on Group Structure

3

Leadership and Social Influence Processes

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 7 Influence
    • Chapter 8 Power
    • Chapter 9 Leadership
  • Participate in Discussion Board for the week
  • Answer Quiz over the assigned reading
  • Submit writing assignment
  • Compete weekly assignment on Group Leadership

4

Decision Making Process and Conflict Management

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 10 Performance
    • Chapter 11 Decision Making
    • Chapter 12 Teams
  • Participate in Discussion Board for the week
  • Answer Quiz over the assigned reading
  • Submit writing assignment
  • Complete Group Assignment on 12 Angry Men

5

Small Group Presentations to an Audience

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 13 Conflict
    • Chapter 14 Intergroup Relations
    • Chapter 15 Groups In Context
  • Participate in Discussion Board for the week
  • Answer Quiz over the assigned reading
  • Submit Final Project (Due Midnight Friday night)
  • Compete Course Evaluation

COSC Accessibility Statement

Charter Oak State College encourages students with disabilities, including non-visible disabilities such as chronic diseases, learning disabilities, head injury, attention deficit/hyperactive disorder, or psychiatric disabilities, to discuss appropriate accommodations with the Office of Accessibility Services at OAS@charteroak.edu.

COSC Policies, Course Policies, Academic Support Services and Resources

Students are responsible for knowing all Charter Oak State College (COSC) institutional policies, course-specific policies, procedures, and available academic support services and resources. Please see COSC Policies for COSC institutional policies, and see also specific policies related to this course. See COSC Resources for information regarding available academic support services and resources.