The Unfairness of Unity
Story By: David Suh Editor: Kevin Kim Web Designer: Li June Choi
Humans are a species that look for social interactions and it dominates many part of our lives, anywhere from making friends to marrying someone. This is quite evident in an academic environment as well. The excitation about group projects are much higher than that of individual projects because you will be able to work with your best friends, or at least be with someone as you work. While group work is often cited as being more fun and more efficient in getting work done, one must ask if that is really the case? Not only does group work often incite arguments and fights, but because of the overly social (and distractible) nature of people, these groups often end up with less than desirable results.
The biggest problem that people often have is that the workload is often unfair and is skewed towards members whose work is more high quality and often will lead to results that all the people in the group want. This can present a large problem to the people who are tasked with the bulk of the work. In a survey of 15 different students people in SIS about a variety of group projects, only a third answered that the workload was fair, while the remaining responses were that of anywhere from “a little unfair” to where the work was skewed so much is resulted in one person doing the majority of the work. This is just going to show that there is almost always an element of unfairness in a group project, something that is usually not welcomed.
Finally, an inquiry about results of the groups have shown that the massive majority have indeed achieved a result that would call desirable (“Good” and above). Group work is much more wanted than individual, despite the fact that is has been shown that the workload is often unfair. This shows that while often in group work the work can be a little unjust, there are people who still want it because they benefit from its unfairness. These groups that are unfair do result in an end product that is desirable, for better or for worse.