Five group assignment feels that every student knows

October 06, 2016
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Hell hath no fury like a student scorned by group work. Even Shakespeare knew that group work could be a real struggle and super stressful when you’d rather work alone.

And God forbid that you’re given a group grade rather than marked individually. Cue the attempt to amicably argue, the arduous task of sharing the load and being paired with people who spam you with messages about meeting up every day.

There are times when you win the lottery by being teamed up with a kickass group of HD students that are determined to earn nothing less than an 85. You might even want to hang out with them after class and introduce them to your squad.

Regardless, group work is an emotional ride. Here are some universal-as-Shakespeare group work feels that you’ll recognise.

When you’re paired with that student that’s on top of their shit

The Lord has heard your prayers and paired you with your uni’s equivalent of Rory Gilmore. They’re sharp, smart and organised, meaning that you don’t have to worry about picking up the slack.

You want to sing it from the rooftops and thank the education system for producing a Lisa Simpson for your group assignment. Here’s a shout-out to all the smart kids dragging our asses up to HD status, you’re super underappreciated.

When someone needs to take the reins but you don’t want to be Kim Jong-un

Everyone in your group is too shy to speak up and voice their opinion. You’ve had enough. Someone needs to take the lead and save your group from failing. The only problem is that you’re past boiling point and you’re coming off a little like Kim Jong-un at that turtle farm a year ago.

It’s a good thing you’re not in this to make friends. Right?

Those awkward arguments

So your group mates disagree about what your group should do and you’re stuck in The Middle like poor Brick.

All diplomacy fades when you have a week until the assignment is due and your group has made no progress. So naturally, you have to get involved and choose a side. Let’s just hope it’s a winner.

Seeing old group members on campus and not knowing if you’re friends

That awkward conundrum of not knowing where you stand with ex-group members. It’s almost like seeing an ex-partner out and about.

Like do you say hi, wave, hang low, or hide behind the nearest shrub like a truly mature adult would do? Personally, I’d choose a shrub or lamp post, but you’re probably a bigger person than I am.

When you’re the weakest link

This is an intervention for those of you that are the weakest links. You might call it ‘being chill’ or ‘taking one thing at a time’, but your group mates are kind of pissed off.

Here’s a few signs that you’re taking it waaay too easy:

-       Your group mates are spamming you on Facebook

-       Your group mates have given up asking for your opinion or giving you work

-       They’ve given you the easiest part so you won’t screw up the assignment

-       You have no idea what they’re talking about most of the time

Yeah, group work sucks but just think; if you were on Survivor, would you have been cast off the island already?

If the answer is yes, chances are your group might tell your tutor that you’ve been doing fuck-all and rally against you. It happens, Snorlax.

Group work is not too different from being forced to eat brussel sprouts but be assured, you’ll get through these trying times. Just try not to evolve into a North Korean dictator in the process.

Eden Gillespie

Eden Gillespie is an International Studies/ Media student at UNSW with a love for breakfast bagels and Louis Theroux.

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