Group Dynamics: The Lectures (Part One)

Powerpoint slides for each topic can be downloaded by clicking the title of the chapter. Links to short narrated presentations are also listed for many of these chapters.

Introduction to Group Dynamics

The tendency to join with others in groups is perhaps the single most important characteristic of humans, and the processes that unfold within these groups leave an indelible imprint on their members and on society.  These lectures serve as a brief introduction to the study of groups, and cover some basic questions (such as, what is a group, after all) and some of the history of the study of groups.

Narrated Lectures

Research Methods

How do researchers test their theories and hypotheses about groups and their dynamics? This lecture divides the scientific enterprise into three components: a) measurement; b) research designs; and c) theory development.

Narrated Lectures

Inclusion and Identity

Philosophers and social scientists have long pondered “the master problem” of social life: What is the connection between the individual and society, including groups, organizations, and communities?

Narrated Lectures

Formation

Groups spring from many sources and serve many purposes, but this lecture examines three sets of factors that can create a group where none existed before: personal qualities, the situation that prompts people to affiliate with one another, and attraction.

Narrated Lectures

Cohesion and Development

Groups, like all living things, develop over time. These lectures both the causes and consequences of group cohesion and the development of cohesion over time.

Narrated Lectures

Structure

Just as the structure of personality can be described in a variety of ways, so have different theorists stressed diverse structural qualities in their analyses of groups. This lecture emphasizes norms, roles, and intermember relations (status, attraction, and communication).

Narrated Lectures

Influence

An interpersonal undercurrent flows beneath the surface of most groups that pushes group members together, toward greater consensus, uniformity, homogeneity, or conformity and dissension, uniqueness, heterogeneity, and independence. Here we examine both processes—conformity and nonconformity.

Narrated Lectures

8 Power

Power is a group-level process, for it involves some members of a group conforming to the requirements of others in situations that range from the purely cooperative and collaborative to those rife with conflict, tension, and animosity. Few interactions advance very far before elements of power and influence come into play.

Narrated Lectures

 

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