What is a Participant-Observer?A participant-observer is a person who is skilled enough to both participate in-group work and observe group process at the same time. While a group is working, a distinction is commonly made between:1.Content:what is being discussed in order to achieved the group’s goals.2.Process:the sequence of group members’ actions that take place over time and are aimed at achieving the group’s goal.Ideally, a competent group member actively participates in the group’s work while also observing the process being used to achieve the group’s goals. To do so, a group member must function on two levels—as participant and as observer. Periodically, the group should stop its task work and discuss the process being used. Members continuously improve the group by (a) discussing the quality of the process being used, (b0 reflecting on its effectiveness in achieving the group’s goals and maintaining effective working relationships among members, and (c) setting goals for improving the process.
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