CMST& 230: Small Group Communication

Class Program
Degree Code
Specified Elective
Credits 5 Lecture Hours 55
This course is a study of the concepts and theories related to group formation and development, and basic group communication dynamics. Students lead and participate in various forms of group discussion and activities. This course is designed for Communication Studies majors, business majors, nursing majors, and community activists, as well as for anyone interested in working effectively in small group settings. (Formerly: SPH 210/CMST 234)
Quarters Offered
Course Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students should be able to demonstrate the following knowledge or skills:

  1. Demonstrate small group communication competencies related to discussion, problem solving, decision making, and presenting.
  2. Work as a group member to help organize thoughts and ideas effectively and express them clearly and correctly in writing and/or presentations.
  3. Identify potential areas of conflict within small groups, and the strategies to work through these conflicts.
  4. Explain the role of diversity and culture in small group communication.
  5. Describe roles necessary for task performance and team maintenance, including the role of leader.
  6. Identify and apply methods to stimulate critical and creative thinking while problem-solving.
  7. Develop skills in establishing interdependent goals and clear group objectives.
  8. Implement structural arrangements that facilitate effective group discussion.
  9. Explain the role of conflict in small group discussion.
  10. Demonstrate the ability to develop an equitable and participatory culture.
  11. Describe how power operates, how power influences who has voice, and how agency can be developed through collaboration.
Institutional Outcomes
IO1 Students will be able to communicate clearly and effectively.
IO3 Students will be able to demonstrate teamwork, ethics, appropriate safety awareness and/or workplace specific skills.
Course Content Outline
  1. Group types and group formation
  2. The role of communication in group dynamics
  3. Different types of roles within a group
  4. Leadership behavior
  5. Problem solving methods in a group
  6. Meeting management and facilitation techniques
  7. Group project that solves a local problem
  8. Different styles and forms of leadership
  9. Group discussion
  10. Communication strategies that enhance interpersonal relationships in a group setting through structural observations, experimentation, surveying, and participation
  11. Group conflict and communication
Department Guidelines

PO4 should be assessed: Students will be able to recognize or articulate personal/interpersonal aspects of, or connections between, diverse cultural, social, or political contexts.
PO5 should be assessed: Students will be able to solve problems by gathering, interpreting, combining and/or applying information from multiple sources.