Group Observation Reaction Paper

2. Group Observation Reaction Paper Students will be asked to attend two different small group meetings within their community. Students have the choice to attend any type of group such as a support group, growth groups, a 12-step recovery meeting, a therapy group, or a counseling group (type of groups may overlap depending on the group). Your choice of a group is not limited to these but your group of choice should exhibit/demonstrate the concepts studied in this course. Some examples of groups that you can attend include: Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, grief group (sometimes done at hospitals), divorce recovery groups, or other groups that are open to your attendance. Typically, larger churches are a significant source for group experiences. You can also contact local professional mental health organizations for group opportunities. However, be mindful that some group leaders and/or members may be hesitant to let “outsiders” to observe their group. You must attend a different type group for each observation (e.g., don’t attend two 12-step recovery groups). A suggestion is to attend two different groups on two different weeks to allow time to process one group observation before attending another group. For the purposes of this course, Bible study groups, church cell groups, Sunday school, etc. will not fit the criteria for group observation. If you have questions about what groups you can attend, please email the professor well in advance of due dates. Students are to write a 5 page paper of the experiences using the criteria outlined below, Students are to use APA format (no abstract required) and submit the reaction paper on the due date indicated on the course schedule. This “Group Observation Reaction Paper” will be composed of three sections with separate headings. The first two sections are summary reports of the groups you attended (e.g., one section for each attended group). These two sections should each include the following elements: name of group, type of

group, objective of the group, number of members present, group stage you believe the group to be in, structured or unstructured group, group discussion topic, one facilitator or co-facilitators, your perception of the group leader/s (i.e. – leadership style), your perception of group members, roles evident among group members, observed group norms and ground rules. The final section of your paper will include a compare and contrast section of the two groups and your personal reaction in attending each of these groups. In other words, what were the similarities and differences of the two groups sessions and your experience of the group process and what you learned by attending both groups. The reaction portion of your paper should focus on your feelings, thoughts, and growth as a result of attending/participating in the group experiences. Some questions that may help answer your personal reaction can include, but are not limited to: Were you comfortable? Why or why not? Did you share? How did it feel to share or not share? How did others’ sharing affect you? If you were facilitating, what would you do differently? This paper should focus on the dynamics and process of each group, not necessarily what was said in the groups. Refer to your textbook and PowerPoint’s to understand the dynamics of group process.


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Discussion Questions (DQ)

Initial responses to the DQ should address all components of the questions asked, include a minimum of one scholarly source, and be at least 250 words.
Successful responses are substantive (i.e., add something new to the discussion, engage others in the discussion, well-developed idea) and include at least one scholarly source.
One or two sentence responses, simple statements of agreement or “good post,” and responses that are off-topic will not count as substantive. Substantive responses should be at least 150 words.
I encourage you to incorporate the readings from the week (as applicable) into your responses.

Weekly Participation

Your initial responses to the mandatory DQ do not count toward participation and are graded separately.
In addition to the DQ responses, you must post at least one reply to peers (or me) on three separate days, for a total of three replies.
Participation posts do not require a scholarly source/citation (unless you cite someone else’s work).
Part of your weekly participation includes viewing the weekly announcement and attesting to watching it in the comments. These announcements are made to ensure you understand everything that is due during the week.

APA Format and Writing Quality

Familiarize yourself with APA format and practice using it correctly. It is used for most writing assignments for your degree. Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for APA paper templates, citation examples, tips, etc. Points will be deducted for poor use of APA format or absence of APA format (if required).
Cite all sources of information! When in doubt, cite the source. Paraphrasing also requires a citation.
I highly recommend using the APA Publication Manual, 6th edition.

Use of Direct Quotes

I discourage overutilization of direct quotes in DQs and assignments at the Masters’ level and deduct points accordingly.
As Masters’ level students, it is important that you be able to critically analyze and interpret information from journal articles and other resources. Simply restating someone else’s words does not demonstrate an understanding of the content or critical analysis of the content.
It is best to paraphrase content and cite your source.

LopesWrite Policy

For assignments that need to be submitted to LopesWrite, please be sure you have received your report and Similarity Index (SI) percentage BEFORE you do a “final submit” to me.
Once you have received your report, please review it. This report will show you grammatical, punctuation, and spelling errors that can easily be fixed. Take the extra few minutes to review instead of getting counted off for these mistakes.
Review your similarities. Did you forget to cite something? Did you not paraphrase well enough? Is your paper made up of someone else’s thoughts more than your own?
Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for tips on improving your paper and SI score.

Late Policy

The university’s policy on late assignments is 10% penalty PER DAY LATE. This also applies to late DQ replies.
Please communicate with me if you anticipate having to submit an assignment late. I am happy to be flexible, with advance notice. We may be able to work out an extension based on extenuating circumstances.
If you do not communicate with me before submitting an assignment late, the GCU late policy will be in effect.
I do not accept assignments that are two or more weeks late unless we have worked out an extension.
As per policy, no assignments are accepted after the last day of class. Any assignment submitted after midnight on the last day of class will not be accepted for grading.


Communication is so very important. There are multiple ways to communicate with me:
Questions to Instructor Forum: This is a great place to ask course content or assignment questions. If you have a question, there is a good chance one of your peers does as well. This is a public forum for the class.
Individual Forum: This is a private forum to ask me questions or send me messages. This will be checked at least once every 24 hours.