Note: This blog post is inspired by the fact I have a group project due this upcoming Tuesday.
Y’know, I rarely complain on this blog and I rarely complain offline as well, but if there’s ONE thing that I love to bitch about, it’s group work! You know what I’m talking about. Group Work: one of the worst concepts of anything in history. Now, I understand the reason why teachers and professors assign them to students. In the professional world, some careers require group work in order to get the job done. However, in all my 12+ years of being a student (and the fact the job I want does NOT require group work), I have come to wince at hearing and seeing those two words together. The four most dreaded words a professor can say nowadays is “Everyone get into groups”. I don’t see the point in forcing a bunch of strangers to collaborate on an assignment. The “group” facet of the “work” is completely unnecessary. In fact, I can do all the group projects by myself, get a better grade and with less hassle.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not antisocial at all. In fact, I’m a sociable and extroverted person so I like meeting new people and socializing in general, but I know for a fact I will not find my soulmate or a new friend through group work! Excluding the ones I had with my friends, they have always had a high potential to end in disaster.
I’ve had quite a few awful experiences working on group projects. I’ve had to work with the procrastinators, the people who left a certain person to do a majority of the work. And you know who that certain person was? Me! Though, I did make sure to let my teacher know I did all of the work so I was the only one to get an A grade. Then there was the dark magician, the person that vanished the day of the project, never to be seen again and pretty much left me and my other partner to present by ourselves. I get it, you’ll shit your pants if you have to talk in front of people, but c’mon!
I also realize I end up being the leader by default since I’m telling others what to do, setting up the presentations in a coherent manner, e-mailing the other members to give them updates and turning in the actual assignment to the professor. I do this for two reasons: I think it’s best at the start to set the groundwork and roles so everyone knows what they need to do, and I’m not going to lie, I do like being a leader lol. It’s better to be a leader than a procrastinator.
I think the worst thing of it all are the members who try to make meetings OUTSIDE of class. Oh great, are you serious? Now why should I take the time out of my day to do that? I pride myself in my time management skills. There is just enough time in the week for me to work, go to class, do homework, study, watch anime, draw, and maintain relationships with my family and friends. Add someone else’s schedule into the mix and then things become complicated. Then add another, and another, and another, and… well you get the idea. How in the blue cheese are we going to make this work?
Anyway, thanks for reading my short rant. I think what I’m trying to say is, no matter whom you get paired up with, what your grade ends up being, or what you gained from the experience, you will invariably end up looking like you went through the last level in Super Mario 3D World. So when it comes to group work and projects, choose your partners wisely and try to keep your sanity intact.