Thursday, August 25, 2016

Notes on Group Discussion

GROUP DISCUSSION
Group discussion is commonly known as GD, as the name suggests, it is a group activity.   People are grouped in a bunch for a common purpose:
§  share knowledge
§  exchange opinions
§  brainstorm [find solutions innovative look for improvements]
§  job selection process
It is a systematic purposeful interactive oral process.   Here the members of the group share certain common objectives.
It is characterized by the formal and structural exchange of views on a particular topic / issue / problem.
Importance of GD
§  GD is used as a technique for personality assessment of candidate for job selection or admission to professional courses.
§  GD aims at problem solving, decision making and personality assessment
§  Group of 6 – 8 members are formed and are given topic may be an opinion / a problem / a case.
§  Members of the selection committee closely evaluate the different skills reflected by the candidates and those with leadership qualities emerge as natural leader/s are normally short listed.
Characteristics of Successful GD
a)      Agreement on group goal
b)     Goal oriented interaction
c)      Agreement on procedure
d)     Co-operative and friendly atmosphere
e)      Effective communication techniques
f)       Equitable distribution of participation
g)     Shared leadership

Areas of Evaluation in selection GDs

a)      Subject knowledge
b)     Oral communication skills
c)      Appropriateness of language
d)     Clarity of expression
e)      Non-verbal clues
f)       Leadership qualities – initiative, analysis, objectivity
g)     Team management – adaptability, positive attitude, co-operation
A group Discussion can be categorically divided into three different phases:
i)          Initiation / Introduction           –    quotes, definition, question, short story, general statement.
ii)        Body of the GD                           –    develop the concept / core unit
iii)       Summarization / Conclusion –    emphasizing central ideas (avoid raising new points; avoid stating only your view point keep brief and concise)

Key Points for GD

1)   Team spirit
5)   Inspiring ability
2)   Reasoning ability
6)   Awareness
3)   Leadership
7)   Listening
4)   Creativity



Misconceptions: A GD is intended for testing debating skills, and as such they are expected to take control of the debate, thereby not allowing others to voice their views and facts in support of their argument. They also try to contradict the views of other participants, hoping they will be noticed and appreciated.

To make a Successful GD:
Content: Fairly good knowledge of the topic and awareness of the current situation will help prevent ideas from drying up fast and keep the GD alive and lively. If you are unfamiliar with the topic, wait for someone else to come up with important information and facts, then quickly formulate you stance and come with your perspective.

Communication: The language should be simple and lucid, use the right word at the right time that gives clarity to the GD and highlights your role in generating ideas in the group. Not to exhaust your ideas at one go. Every time you contribute, make your talk relevant and brief. It is necessary to listen with great attention and react with pertinent comments.

Constant interruption while others are speaking must be avoided. The discussion becomes meaningless if all the participants speak at the same time. Some candidates try to interrupt and even make fun of other participants. This strategy will adversely affect them.
           
No points will be lost even if a candidate openly supports or agrees with the views of the other candidates. Valid reasons must be given as to why you support a particular point of view. In case your views are strongly criticized, there is no need to be upset. Criticism taken positively will act in the candidate’s favour.
Thinking: Listen and understand the arguments of other participants and at the same time decide what points you should raise and how.

Group behaviour: Expressing your views emphatically will be appreciated in a GD, it is equally important that you draw the more reticent participants into the discussion and involve them in the decision-making process. The participant should be tactful while contradicting the views of other participants. Blunt statements such as ‘Your arguments are baseless’, or ‘You are absolutely wrong’, are to be avoided strictly. The participant has to disagree without sounding rude by saying things such as ‘I beg to differ’ or ‘Sorry to disagree with you’.

 

 

Types of GDs: Broadly divided into two types:


v  Concrete and fact-oriented topics, which need factual content in combination with the right perspective to be successful.

v  Abstract topics where more than facts, you need interpretations and creative thinking. Here, the perspective from which the interpretation is made and the themes you build into them will be more significant and valuable.

Structuring a GD

The following language may be used in structuring a GD:

Entering a discussion: Make comments on previous contributions and show one’s own relation to them. Change the trend of discussion by agreement, disagreement, and amplification or by restriction.

Some Patterns of starting a discussion:
  • We have assembled here to discuss …
  • We are here today to discuss …
  • Let us get down to business …
  • Let’s start how to proceed with the discussion …
  • Let’s start off with No.1 …
  • Shall we make a start?
  • Shall we set the ball rolling?
  • Can you please give your views on?

Some patterns for interrupting a discussion:
  • Sorry to interrupt you …
  • Excuse me, but …
  • Could I make a suggestion, please?
  • Could I say something ….?
  • Sorry to disagree with you …
  • If I could make a point here …
Some patterns of ending a discussion:
  • I think that covers everything
  • It is time to wind up
  • Shall we close the discussion then?
Comments:
What I think is …
I feel that …
The main point I wish to make is …
I agree up to a certain point but …
I must disagree with your opinion …
I would question whether …
It seems to me that …
As far as I am concerned …
I don’t agree with the previous speaker …
Please don’t interrupt. Let me finish
Can you wait till I finish?
I think we are moving away from the main point.
If I may turn now to …
Turning now to …
I want to comment briefly on …
I intend to make … points about …
Now to elaborate on the first point …
I strongly believe that …
With all due respect
I am not in a position to say anything about …
If we look at it in another light …
On the contrary …
I don’t think any one could disagree with …
I can’t help thinking …
Can I finish please …?
Finally …

Successful GDs

A good and successful group discussion is one where the topic has been discussed threadbare.

v  Analyse the topic word by word. Identify the frame of reference you would be using during the discussion.
v  Look at the topic from the point of view of all the affected parties.
v  Look at the topic from all the various angles and all the possible perspectives.
v  At the end of a discussion or when you know that the discussion time is almost up, it is necessary to give an appropriate conclusion. To do this, quickly recap the important points that have come up during the discussion, emphasize the points on which there were differences and where there was convergence of opinion and make the concluding remark.
Points to be remembered:

v  Prepare well by reading and reflecting on the topic.
v  Anticipate the points of others.
v  Listen keenly and understand the points made by others.
v  Break in and make your point without waiting to be called upon to do so, ensuring relevance to the context.
v  Be loud enough to be heard by everyone.
v  Make brief remarks often rather than giving long speeches.
v  Be open minded and conciliatory rather than dogmatic.
v  Try to be group-centred rather than self-centred.
v  Avoid personal attacks and name-calling. Accept criticism with dignity and rebut it with strong arguments.
v  Back your arguments with evidence and authority.
v  Use appropriate gestures and expressions.
v  Maintain eye contact with group members.

                                                                    ****


Friday, July 15, 2016

Everyday Vocabulary Exercise



Date :
Everyday Vocabulary Exercise


Synonym:                               (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Antonym:                               (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….   
Homophone:                          (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Homonym:                             (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Homograph:                           (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Phrasal Verb:                                     (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Idiom:                                                 (1) ……………………………………………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Abbreviation:                                     (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….   
Acronym:                                (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
One Word Substitute:           (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Words often confused:         (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Collocation:                            (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Euphemism:                           (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Pronunciation:                       (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….
Spelling:                                  (1) ………………………………
                                                e.g. …………………………………………………………………………………………….

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Short story Project

Introduction:

1. Briefly about the characters and their role in the story
2. Brief outline of the story

Findings:

1. Themes (Subjects / topics) discussed in the story
2. Problem in the story, if any,
3. Relevance to the present situation in the society
4. Three points how similar topics/subjects/themes are taking place positively in the society
5. Three points how similar topics/subjects/themes are taking place (negatively) and how society is suffering from the negative actions of the selfish / egoistic individuals 

Conclusion and Recommendation:

1. The learning from the story and/or
2. Message of the story to the society / individual
3. Various other possible solutions to the problem identified in the story
4. Your impression on each of the character in the story
5. If you were in the shoes of the Characters in the story, your actions and response in each character of the story

     

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Self-introduction (Know Thyself)

‘Know thyself’

                It was Socrates who said ‘Know thyself’. Everyone should know his or her own strengths and weaknesses. Only then will they be able to face the battle of life with confidence. People in general know very little about themselves. Now you have an opportunity to think and find out about yourself and speak to your friends about your character and personality.

Activity 1

Give specific answers to the following questions about your character, personality, attitudes, likes and dislikes. Your friends will react to your views either by defending them or opposing them. The interaction will thus lead to an open discussion.

1.       What are you by nature? Express your views on each of these items:

    1. Shy and reserved / sociable / aggressive
    2. Confident/hesitant
    3. Humble/proud
    4. Calm and collected / sentimental and impulsive

2.       How do you behave with other people?

Like to initiate talk with strangers / expect other people to talk to you first / prefer to be always surrounded by other people / like to have a lot of friends

3.       Speak briefly about your sleeping habits.

Sleep more than eight hours at night / like to sleep / have a nap during the day / find it difficult to sleep at night

4.       What is your attitude to work?

Like to be active during the day / love holidays / find it difficult to sit quietly / hate work / don’t like to be lazy

5.       How much attention do you pay to your appearance?

Like to wear the latest outfits / prefer to dress in a simple manner / attend to your face before going out / attach importance to make-up / have your hair cut once a month

6.       How practical are you?

Don’t mind doing simple repairs at home / cannot mend anything / prefer to do simple jobs yourself / can fix just about anything

7.       Which is the quality your friends like most in you?
Your honesty / your cheerfulness / your generosity / your willingness to help

8.       How would you describe yourself?
Religious / active / practical / academic / jovial

9.       Which of the following would you choose?
To have at least two friends / a number of acquaintances / just one friend / five or six friends

10.   What would make you most uneasy?
Somebody praising you in front of others / being in a large crowd / people laughing at you / seeing somebody cry

11.   Which would you like most to improve?
Your looks / your attitude to work / your social life / your interest in current affairs / your relationship with your family


Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Students and their Duties

STUDENTS AND THEIR DUTIES

“Student Life is the Happiest Life”. It is a sheltered life. It is a privilege. Every privilege comes with certain responsibilities. The students can happily discharge these responsibilities, if they take up the following four duties carefully.

1.      Duty you owe to yourselves
2.      Duty which you owe to your fellow-students
3.      Duty which you owe to those in authority over you (or Duty to parents and Teachers)
4.      Duty which you owe to those who are around you, not students, but people of the wider world around you.

I. Duty you owe to yourselves:
To acquire knowledge not merely to help you in the examinations, but to help you in later life.  Knowledge is an exacting mistress; she needs devotion; whole-hearted devotion on the part of the person who seeks her. Such whole-hearted devotion is possible only in the days of studenthood.  
But knowledge will not merely help all alone for the success. Along with knowledge one must acquire character. The success depends more on character than on knowledge. Therefore, you should acquire a character which must show earnestness, which helps to  raise the life of people around.

II. Duty which you owe to your fellow-students
Your duty to your fellow students is to teach and support. This duty will secure the habit of cooperation which is required in later life. It helps to use the opportunities properly and sometimes to stand for others feelings and regard their views; sometimes standing out for your own views. In later life one cannot acquire the habit of cooperation because of closed mindset.

III. Duty which you owe to those in authority over you (Duty to parents and Teachers)
It is the tradition of the East to obey the parents and treat the teachers with reverence. If this is ignored, it is a national calamity. This duty is a pre-requisite to acquire knowledge which in turn helps to make use of fullest advantage of opportunities available.  
In the process of fulfilling the requirements of wards, parents shall sacrifice their needs, comforts and if required ‘life’ itself. Therefore obeying parents has become part of the tradition of East and a pre-requisite to acquire knowledge.
Reverence to your teachers helps to build discipline in the interest of common good. If the teacher objects to something, it is your duty to abstain from doing it.  It helps students to build and strengthen their nature, not to deviate from the right path,  and to develop judgment and discretionary abilities in later life.

IV. Duty which you owe to those who are around you, not students, but people of the wider world around you.
Suffering and struggling is a part of life; it is your duty to sympathize with the people around who are suffering with their problems and struggling to surmount. May be you cannot immediately redress their problems, but you should observe and study the problems and struggles of the people around. This knowledge helps students to face the society in later life. One should not venture to face the life without this knowledge.  Therefore, this  is your duty to lead a better life in later part of life.