- Explore concepts of collaboration in human interaction.
Artifact: Week 4 Dialogue and Collaboration
“The “other” is simply those who aren’t like me. I think the population that consists of the “other” depends on the situation. Growing up, I was the “other” in my community because it was a heavy Hispanic neighborhood. My brother was the “other” because he did traditional sports whereas I was a classically trained ballerina. I now work in a large Hispanic and African American population, so I am labeled as the “other” on a daily basis.
Rationale: I picked these two discussion boards because of the global state of mind that they put me in. Rather than just thinking about immediate coworkers, and myself it made me broaden that circle. So often when I am thinking about collaboration, I almost have my blinders on, but when forced to think about big picture, it helped me to reevaluate the existing relationships and collaboration practices that I already have in place. Too often, we just assume that everyone around us is like us, and comparatively, they are. But when you’re forced to think about differences with people from different cultures, it helped me to respect the differences closer to home as well.
- Articulate contemporary understandings of power and privilege differentials in organizations and society.
Artifact: Week 3 Dialogue
“For the most part I think we grow up thinking of power in two ways: 1. People having power over you, negative, controlling, etc. and 2. Having power over other people, positive, potential change agent. When we see ourselves in positions of power, it’s rarely with a negative mindset, but when someone has power over you, we question their morals and judgements.
I really enjoyed reading the different views on power this week which challenged our basic assumptions regarding power. The first reading which described the four different types of power helped to outline two new ideas of how to use power for me – power as and power with. Of course i’ve thought about strength in numbers before, but you don’t always consider that as a type of power. This article outlined collaboration and community as a way to achieve power through the WE. This is an incredibly powerful message to me, and got me thinking about how to incorporate it within the community based organizations I operate through.
In terms of shifting norms, I think that “power with” and “we” become even more essential. If we want to change things, it is essential for people to band together as a unified voice to accomplish their goals. As a culture, we are extremely complacent hiding behind the masses rather than stepping out, and I think that shows through things like standardized testing like the last video talks about. We want people to fit together into one mold even though we preach individuality and America as the melting pot of different people. Whenever people ask about this program, I describe it as a lot of community leadership and social advocacy. If we want to push boundaries and change norms, it starts with collaborating with different community agencies to define these new norms.
Atlee, T. (2011). Four types of power. Retrieved from:
WATCH: RSA Animate. Changing Education Paradigms. Retrieved from:
Rationale: This week really set a good foundation for the rest of the course in terms of thinking about how power affects relationships and collaborations. I especially like the Atlee article and his description of the different types of power. So often power is thought of in a negative connotation, but he helped to illustrate how power can be positive and used successfully in collaborations. We talked a lot about power and how it related to our group assignment as well. In that situation, I do think power was abused and used in a negative way, but (I hope) our discussion helped to alleviate some of that and use power in a positive collaboration.
- Identify and engage stakeholders to achieve definable goals.
Artifact: Final Assignment
Collaboration Final Assignment
Rationale: This assignment was great for me to really nail down all of the different ideas and conversations I have had regarding my capstone and bring it all together into a cohesive piece. By defining each of our roles it helped me to see how the project would really come together. I already had existing relationships with each person, so engaged them was not a focus. As I just transitioned to my new job this week, having an existing plan in place will help get my new school and partners on board easier and faster. This paper helped with replicated the ideas!
- Create conditions for stakeholders to synthesize diverse perspectives in group settings.
Artifact: Assignment 2
Rationale: This was a great assignment! In working in a group setting, we were able to discuss some very diverse groups and a struggling collaboration project that happened. By diving into it, I think we were able to get a good grasp on different ways to make it better and also a model for future collaborations. This project also forced us to experience collaboration in a group setting. The first few days were definitely a challenge as we worked to nail down a topic and plan for the paper, but as grew to develop stronger relationships and trust, it became an enjoyable process. It was interesting writing a paper about collaboration practices while we were living them first hand!
- Effectively manage interpersonal, organizational, and technology-mediated conflicts.
Artifact: Week 2 Dialogue, Week 5 Collaboration, and Week 8 Collaboration
“When thinking of online campaigns or things of that nature in technology mediated collaboration, there has to be strong marketing component. If the ad, post, etc. is not eye catching, informative, and simple, it won’t be very effective. I think when using platforms such as discussion boards or emails, it’s important to be very explicit since so many non verbal cues aren’t able to be transmitted. Tone is hard to read through the written word as well, so follow up in a face to face or verbal setting can help clarify things as well.
Pros to technology mediated collaboration:
1. This program! Without technology mediated collaboration, none of this learning would be able to happen
2. Connecting people when physical locations make it impossible
3. Potentially faster lines of communication
1. Loss in verbal cues/tone of voice
2. Lack of human connection
Nonverbal cues play a big role in both methods. In face to face contact, reading body language and facial expressions can help to asses how others are feeling. This can become difficult in technology, especially in a professional setting. Through phrases like “lol” and emojis, we can communicate some of the same feelings through technology, but those things are not necessarily appropriate when writing an email to your boss. At the same time, agreeing upon things through technology can hold people more accountable as compared to verbally agreed upon things.
I think it depends on the situation which method I prefer. I admit there are many days when I want nothing to do with anyone, so technology allows me to sit back in the shadows so to speak. In other areas, technology drives me nuts because I am definitely a “people person”. I thrive off of energy that other people put out and am one of the worst people at misunderstanding the tone in written word. Both have an essential place in our lives, and we have to learn how to use them to our advantage without relying too much on one.”
Rationale: I definitely could not pick one artifact for this learning objective as we touched so deeply on each different aspect of interpersonal, organizational, and technology mediated conflicts. Each discussion post addressed a different one and allowed for some good self-reflection. My assumptions regarding conflict were really challenged a lot throughout this course. As I talked about before with power having a negative connotation, conflict also does. I have always disliked conflict and avoid it like the plague, but I need to constantly remind myself that conflict can be good! As I am transitioning into my new job, I can see a lot of really positive conflict occurring as I work to combine my pervious knowledge with a new way of doing things. The trick is going to be utilizing the techniques and practices that I have learned throughout this course to continue keeping conflict alive and positive as I get more settled in the job!