Defining And Understanding Group Work Social Work Essay

This essay will be constructed into five parts. It will foremost specify what a group is, secondly explore theoretical accounts of group procedure, thirdly the considerations involved in puting up a group, fourthly it will discourse the benefits and barriers of group work, in conclusion it will reason by summarizing the cardinal points of the essay.

A definition of a group will be given in the first portion of the essay and what the rules of group work are. In the 2nd portion some theoretical accounts of group procedures will be explored and what their relevancy is to the specific group, such as Bruce Tuckman ‘s theoretical account and Dorothy Stock Whitakers Model. Next a treatment will take topographic point on how to put up a group, including what steps to take before puting up a group utilizing a method on that used by Dorothy Stock Whitaker. Benefits to group work will so be discussed and the barriers staff will meet in set uping groups. Finally a sum-up of the cardinal points will reason the essay.

There are many definitions to what a group is and many different rules or qualities within them. Peoples are portion of a group on a day-to-day footing such as a household group. Persons all have a function in this group such as a female parent, girl, sister or an aunt, a household group is an informal assemblage where our personal development is met. Arnold and Boggs describe a group as ;

“ A assemblage of two or more persons, who portion a common intent, meet over significant period of clip, in face to confront interaction, to accomplish an identifiable end. ” ( Arnold & A ; Boggs, 2007 ) .

For the intent of the group chosen here, an anxiousness direction group, it is a group composed for people with similar jobs where they can portion and addition experience of how to cover with anxiousness.

Bruce Tuckman had a theoretical account which used five phases of group development, forming, ramping, norming, executing and recessing. This theoretical account explains the 5 phases of how a group should develop harmonizing to Tuckman.

The first phase is the Forming phase where everyone is acquiring to cognize each other possibly even pretend to wish everyone. People ‘s behavior are by and large polite and superficial.

The 2nd phase is the Ramping phase here people ‘s personalities start to demo, some struggle may originate in this phase as niceness diminishes, Cliques may organize and determinations are difficult to do as persons begin to dispute others, power battles will be apparent in this phase.

The 3rd phase is the Norming phase this is where everyone will be used to each other and trust will hold been built between the group. Roles and duties will be defined by this phase and accepted by the other members.

The 4th phase is the Performing phase here the focal point is clear the group has a shared end to accomplish, dissensions may originate at this phase but they can be positively and constructively resolved because of the group coherence.

The 5th phase is the recessing phase this is where the undertaking is complete and the group breaks up and people can travel on to new things. This phase is normally discussed throughout the group prior to the ‘end ‘ so people have the chance to fix and discourse anxiousnesss about the group expiration.

( Tuckman 1965 )

The relevancy of Tuckman ‘s theoretical account to this specific group is that the group leader/facilitator should be knowing about the theories about group development, group procedure and group kineticss. Using a specific theoretical account for groups as a usher allows the staff to measure what appears to be the ‘normal ‘ behavior for members as they approach each phase and buttocks whether the group is come oning towards doing their ends, besides it allows them to place any jobs or dysfunctional behavior that arise. Tuckman ‘s theoretical account is relevant to group constitution as every group has a beginning, in-between and an terminal. The beginning being the forming phase where the group starts and debuts are made, the in-between being storming, norming and executing where the group gets to cognize one another, signifier confederations and get down to open up and construct trust. The terminal is the dissolution phase where the group comes to an terminal. There is no 1 theoretical account that is used in a specific group and they are non ever stiff, intending they will non follow each of these phases as they come but might travel back and Forth until the phase is complete so they can travel to the following phase.

The group that has been chosen is an anxiousness direction group for people who are retrieving from substance abuse. Anxiety Management programmes are for persons who are retrieving from intoxicant and/or drug usage. The group is aimed at persons who experience anxiousness, including concern, panic and societal phobic disorder, which are stable in respects to substance usage but still see symptoms of anxiousness. The group is based upon Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and will research with service users how ideas, feelings and behaviors can keep anxiousness. National Institute for Clinical Excellence ( 2004 ) has produced guidelines for generalised anxiousness and phobic disorder urging cognitive behavioral therapy as the pick of intervention. Before puting up any type of group there are a few undertakings and ideas to take into consideration before presenting a group in to this country, here the considerations will be discussed. These considerations were taken into history while puting up the anxiousness direction group.

A thorough appraisal or preliminary interviews should be carried out of the service users this can find whether or non the service user has ability to take part in a group and should be evaluated throughout the group term.

Service users should be asked about the type of groups they have been in and what their experiences are of being in them. If they have been in groups/therapy earlier such as AA or NA explain that this group is different from those groups it is non a ego aid group, this group enables the service users to place their behaviors and happen ways to alter them through the group experience and learn from others about different ways of get bying. The group will hold different people with different degrees of personal experiences, what they found helpful and what was non so helpful and portion these experiences with the remainder of the group.

First the service users would necessitate to be asked what their positions and sentiments were on staff presenting groups in the substance abuse country and what groups they would be most likely to go to if it was to travel in front, this can be done by a questionnaire, face-to-face or by holding an informal meeting. This is of import because the staff do non desire to set up a group that is non traveling to be good accompanied, so happening out what is of import to the service users is a large consideration. The remainder of the staff squad would so be informed of what might be traveling to go on and hold a treatment on what their ideas are and if they would be willing to give up an hr or two each hebdomad to ease the group. This can be debatable for illustration if the group was a smoke surcease group staff who smoke or people who have ne’er smoked could hold different positions and may non desire to ease it.

Second the staff member would take the information that they had collected from the service users/patients and come up with the most common group. They would so make the research into that specific group, what does it affect do they need any other members of the multidisciplinary squad to take portion, for illustration an exercising group for the older individual do they necessitate a physical therapist to be at that place or take portion.

Once this research has been done the staff member can get down to be after the group.

Dorothy Stock Whitaker ( 2001 ) used a similar set of rules to that below while puting up a group.

The staff member would hold already identified the group population during oppugning of the service users/patients at the start, so this will find whether it will be an all male, female or assorted sex group. The anxiousness direction group will be heterogenous members may be mixed in age, gender, civilization, and so on. This is because the service users have similar demands, covering with anxiousness so it seems appropriate to hold a assorted degree of experiences.

The group leader/facilitator would hold to make up one’s mind whether co facilitation or co-working is appropriate, this is a good manner for less experient facilitators to larn from more experient facilitators, besides co-facilitation provides an chance for feedback. The proportion of facilitators to members may do the service users feel threatened or outnumbered and may experience loath to open up or portion things, harmonizing to Whitaker ( 2001 ) it is a good regulation non to hold any more than two members of staff nowadays, including pupil perceivers, this can be an advantage it provides the group with two people with different experiences. By holding two facilitators in the group one may detect things that the other has missed.

It appears that the construction of the group is of import for illustration the anxiousness group will be a clip limited group that will run for one and a half hours one time a hebdomad,

the facilitator should remind the members of this at the start of the group and once more when they need to weave up, this can help the group to run swimmingly, if the session is shorter it is non adequate clip for people to settle in and if it is longer t it might do restlessness and go tiring.

If the group is traveling to run one time a hebdomad the service users need to be informed how long the group will run, for case 12 hebdomads, this will depend on the figure of subjects that will be covered. This is of import for the service users to be cognizant of as they could hold other committednesss such as kid attention or even work, so they will necessitate to set up clip off or person to look after their kids.

The size of the group may hold an consequence on the manner the group develops, excessively little a group will lose chances to research or interchange ideas or feelings, nevertheless excessively big a group can hold the same consequence. Literature shows some difference in sentiments about how large or little a group should be nevertheless most surveies say that between six and nine people are merely about the right sum.

The location of the groups is of import, if it is a community based group people do non desire to be going an hr on a coach to acquire at that place. If it is a infirmary based group so the room should be of equal size, if the room is excessively little for the group size it could go really warm and people may go uncomfortable and agitated, which may ensue in struggles with others, allow to keep the size of the group comfortably and off from others so that confidentiality can be maintained, a room that can be block booked for future Sessionss and be available for the clip the Sessionss will run. If service users were to turn up hebdomad after hebdomad to a different room or a room being dual booked it could do the staff expression uninterested or incompetent and they may lose involvement which may ensue in hapless attending. The agreement within the group room for illustration is the group traveling to be sitting in an unfastened circle or around tabular arraies ; ideally an unfastened circle is recommended nevertheless most people feel comfy sitting unit of ammunition a tabular array as they feel less exposed.

Before the group starts inform the service users/patients and staff about the group that is traveling to be traveling in front, when it will get down, what clip and how long for. This would besides be the test run so they need to do aware of this. This could be advertised through postings or an information cusp.

For illustration the group that is traveling to be run is an anxiousness direction group it will run for 10 hebdomads it will be on a Thursday dark at 7:30pm and will last for one and a half hours.

Group facilitators find many ways to open groups for illustration utilizing ice surfs to ease the tenseness and so possibly debuts from everyone in the group or frailty versa. Furthermore it is sometimes appropriate to state nil and allow the service users start the group but as it is an anxiousness group this would non be appropriate, as this method would stir up feelings of anxiousness and may non be tolerated by the service users, therefore the ground they are in the group to get down with. The group agreement/rules may be discussed ; this is where the outlooks of the group, facilitators and service users will be discussed such as confidentiality, clip keeping/attendance and engagement in the group. These are all of import factors as no 1 in the group will desire their feelings and ideas discussed with others outside the group ; it is difficult plenty for them to open up.

The biggest benefit of group therapy is assisting people to gain that they are non entirely. Some of the benefits to being in a group that might pull people to a group could be the fact that it is safety in Numberss ; person may experience more confident talking up in a group than in a one-to-one session.

Meeting up with people in similar state of affairss can decrease the feeling of being isolated or the lone 1 with a peculiar job they can have aid and common support from person who has similar jobs, this can authorise the group and persons. Working in a group can better people interpersonal accomplishments and place their strengths and failings. Group work can offer things like trust games, function drama and relationship exercisings that members may happen helpful as it can learn them or heighten their interpersonal accomplishments, that may non be available elsewhere such as one-to-one meetings. This can be an gratifying experience that is besides helpful and enlightening to the service users. ( Lindsay & A ; Orton 2007 )

Groups offer the chance to portion and this can promote others to larn effectual and positive ways to cover with state of affairss as they arise.

However group work will non accommodate everyone all of the clip some people may experience more stray as they are non acquiring the undivided attending they would anticipate to acquire from 1:1 meetings, this may ensue in non-attendance or hapless attending.

Group work might be a drain on resources as it will take excess clip to be after and ease undertakings for illustration excess staff or to supply commissariats such as tea or java. The group size can be a factor ; a big group can bring forth fewer chances for others in the group to pass on. The group may hold a certain grade of struggle at times but this shows that the group is working good. The facilitator may happen that a peculiar member may non be suited to the group after a few hebdomads, but do they except the individual from the group, this could hold negative effects on the individual by making this, it may do them believe negatively in the hereafter about group work and non go to any longer ( Whitaker 2001 ) . Some members may believe that they will be stigmatised as they are go toing a group specifically aimed at turn toing their issues and it could be debatable if the group is held in an country such as a infirmary which in its ego could transport stigma. The group may be expensive to put up as the employment of other bureaus may be required such as a trained healer. ( Lindsay & A ; Orton 2007 )

The essay used Tuckman, s Model nevertheless there are assorted other theoretical accounts that can be used, the point here is that group leaders/facilitators should be cognizant of these models/theories and utilize them as a usher theoretical accounts are a utile tool, it will give penetration in to how groups should develop and steer them on what the ‘normal ‘ behaviors are at each phase of development.

From this history we can see that group work has some good advantages for service users and facilitators, it can authorise the service users to venture into new things as they gain new accomplishments and get bying schemes from others in the group, nevertheless this may non be the instance all of the clip, others may happen that this was the worst experience of their lives. Besides that by utilizing a feedback system for the groups the facilitators can larn from these experiences excessively by inquiring the service users and co-facilitator what could hold been done better, what was non done so good, for illustration, this can be taken on board to do the service better following and a more gratifying experience.

We considered the barriers of group work largely for the service user but besides for the facilitators and to admit that these exist they will happen from clip to clip but non to be disheartened by them, alternatively we can larn from them.

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