Employee involvement plays an important role in an organization especially to achieve an organization goals and objectivities. Due to manager limited ability to make the best decision alone, so employee participation in decision making process is very important. Through this process it can generate more diversity and better solutions. So the same concept can be applies on many other activities, not just for the organization or office decision making only. For example, employee involvement also can be apply to many daily activities such as classroom’s activities that involve students during the decision making process. When there is student involvement in the decision making process, it is known as participative decision making.
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Student involvement defined as the degree to which student influence how the decision is organized and carried out. This provides opportunities to students for sharing their knowledge and information between each other when they take part in decision making. However, non-participative decision making process still often occurs. It happen when students did not take part in the decision making process during classroom’s activities. It means that these students might not even know the existence of the problem or they are not motivated to provide any information, recommendations, commitment in the classroom or maybe the instructor did not want to discuss with the student when making the decision.
On the other side, student involvement can be divided into three levels. At the lowest level of student involvement, students will just provide the information when their instructors ask them. They do not make any recommendation and might not even know what the problem is about. At the medium level, students know the source of problem and they will make recommendations to instructor. At the highest level of student involvement, entire decision making process is handed over to students for them to solve it. These all can be summarized by the figure below.
Those are the examples in the level of student involvement in both participative and non-participative decision making process. The higher the rung on the ladder indicates that the higher level of student involvement in the decision making process. Although student involvement in decision making process has many advantages but it also leads to some potential problems that might occur during the process.
In this assignment, the main problem is focus to the explanation on how student involvement in classroom decisions typically made by the instructor alone might improve decision quality and the potential problems that may occur in this process.
Source of Problems
Based on the problem that has been identified, we will elaborate the source of problem according to the problems that may occur during the participative decision making process and also the problems that may occur during the non-participative decision making process. The explanation is made like that, in order to make a comparison between participative decision making and non-participative decision making. The purpose is to give a clear view on “how student involvement in classroom decision typically made by the instructor alone might improve decision quality”. Besides, this elaboration also can answer the second problem “what potential problems that may occur in the participative decision making process”.
These are the potential problems that might occur during the participative decision making process :
Risk of conflict
There are two types of conflict undermine the benefits of the student involvement. First, the conflict of ideas. In participative decision making process, many students are involved. Different people come out with different ideas and opinion. So automatically it will generate a lot of ideas, opinions and solutions. This will easily leads to the conflict of ideas. Normally it is hard to reach an agreement on the preferred solution. Second, the conflict between the student individual goal and the overall goal. Sometimes the student goals and the classroom goals will be different, then it will happen conflict within that individual. This will prevent that student to give full contribution in the decision making process.
Decision structure is the decision that made based on the past experiences. Usually the problem that happens in this situation is the problem that is routine. It means that the problem had happened before and the solution has been identified in the past. Normally when this kind of problem occurs again, the standard procedure developed with a ready-made solution. So there is no need for the student involvement when making the decision since the instructor already know how to solve it based on the past experience.
Lack of Sufficient Knowledge
Sometimes students do not have the knowledge that is needed to solve the problem. So even if they participate in the decision making process, they also cannot provide much help since they lack of sufficient knowledge.
Students are made up by variety of people. Some are very active, motivated and give a lot of commitment in the decision making process. However, some students are very inactive, not motivated and will not contribute in the decision making process.
Fishbone (Source of Problem)
Risk of Conflict
Participative Decision Making
Lack of sufficient knowledge
On the other side, these are the potential problems that might occur in the non-participative decision making process :
The will of the decision maker or the instructor to share the power with the students.
Lack of Alternatives
People collectively tend to be better than individuals at generating and picking the best alternative because they have diverse perspectives and a broad representation of values.
Some students are unlikely to accept a decision made without their involvement, especially when the problem is related to them.
Sometime instructor alone fails to identify the problem accurately because students are usually the first to know when the problem occurs.
Mind-Map (Source of Problem)
Nowadays, western countries already practice classroom decision making rather than only listen to the lecturers and follow whatever the lecturers have decided. Different people have different thought and one issue or questions may come out with various solutions. This will not happen if students’ ideas and creativity in decision making process are being ignored or restricted. Therefore, throughout this classroom decision making, we can found out some learning outcomes which can benefit many parties. Of course, the most beneficial party will be students.
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By participating in classroom decision making process, students are becoming more independent, responsible, aggressive, and more confidence. These outcomes are helping them in their future workplace. In terms of independent, the students can become more independent in making their own decision rather than relying on lecturer to make decision. This also built up students’ confidence level as they need to be confidence with the decision they made and be responsible of the effect or result from the decision made.
Furthermore, students may gain diverse useful information and experience from others through the sharing of different decision making process especially in group assignments. This process is not only beneficial for the students themselves but also other students. Throughout the process, others may absorb different way to make the correct decision or it might be efficient way to make a better decision. Therefore, the students involve less cost occur and yet student may develop their problem solving skills.
By realizing the importance of the classroom decision making participation, students may also improve their communication skills. Among all the assignments or coursework, students may be required or encouraged to have it in a group or team for better decision making. By doing this, students are able to share their various decision among all the group members and decision can be made accurately throughout all the discussion that made by group members. This may come out with better results. Indirectly, students can realize that the importance of communication which playing an important role in every decision making process.
Generate alternatives to solve the problem
The main problem can be solved by two alternatives. It is either to implement participative decision making process in the classroom or non-participative decision making process.
Choose alternative to solve the problem
We has chosen the participative decision making process instead of the non-participative decision making process. This is chosen based on the analysis that we have done on the potentials problems from both methods. In our opinion, participative decision making that involve student in it is better and more suitable compare to the non-participative decision making that made based on the instructor alone. When there are more people involved in the decision making process, there are a high number of outcomes. So the probability to leads to a better solution is getting higher. Furthermore, recently student in Colorado remarked, “We can give you respect. We are able to understand the issues. We can think for ourselves. It’s our education. If we have a say, it will make a difference”. Based on that remarked phrase, we can see that nowadays students are prefers participative decision making more compare to non-participative.
Besides that, we also can affects on the student behavior and values through participative decision making. If we want student to take responsibility for their own behavior and decision, we must first give them responsibility. Moreover student involvement in the decision making process will positively increase their commitment towards the decision that are make in the class either directly or indirectly.
Involving student in the decision making process offers a number of advantages. First, it can identify and define the problems better. It is because students are the first one to know when something goes wrong. Other than that, it usually generates more and better solutions than the instructor working alone. Lastly, through student involvement, it is more likely to select the best option. People collectively tend to be better than individual alone when picking the best alternatives. This is because they have diverse perspectives and a broad representation of values. That is why we choose participative decision making instead of non-participative decision making.
There are several ways to solve the potential problems that might occur during the participative decision making process. That is through :
Motivating student by rewards
Usually, the students always motivate by the reward given by lecturer. The reward can be consists of beneficiary reward and non-beneficiary reward. Beneficiary reward is given something to the students such as pen drive or other stationery. Meanwhile, the non-beneficiary reward is an intangible reward, and this type reward usually come from internal forces or nonverbal. The examples of non-beneficiary are give encouragement (e.g. well done, good job, etc.) Through reward, the students are more motivated to involve themselves in discussion and these can strengthen their commitment to the decision.
Complexity of the problem
Student involvement is unnecessary when the problem is routine. Instead, the benefits of the student involvement increase with the novelty and complexity of the problem or opportunity.
Provide sufficient information
If the student is lack of sufficient information, then the instructor should provide them some necessary information first for them before involving them into the participative decision making process.
Level of involvement
If the student goals and norms conflict with the overall goals, then only a low level of student involvement is advisable. If the conflict of idea is likely, then high involvement would be difficult to achieve, so a low level of involvement is advisable.
After completing this assignment, our group felt that it was a great learning experience for every member of the team. Throughout this assignment, we face many problems. Before we start the assignment, we made a discussion to understand the question and also give the opinion about the answer individually. Therefore, communication is very important in this discussion. All of us have to learn how to cooperate in a team and respect different opinions. If there is a member of the team not willing to give their thought to the team members, it will not lead to a complete assignment. Every member’s opinion is very important in doing this assignment, so we make sure that everyone contributes ideas in running a team before we make the final decision.
After that, we have to decide how to present creatively and effectively, who will go to present in front of the class. We had to create a way of present that can attract the attention of the class to listen in a limited time which is only 10 minutes for each group. Therefore, time management is very important in this assignment. We have to estimate the time for presentation and also make sure the slide show is interesting and informative that can caught attention of students to listen. Also, we have to make sure that the presenter is very well in presentation which has the best English communication skills. Because our group consists of four members, therefore we have to separate the task to each of the member. The summarizing which is the most crucial part that needs to transmit clearly as this we will give the strongest presenter who had the best English communication skills to present. While the introduction and the definition will present by the other member. As a conclusion, this presentation gives a very good experience to every member and this can help members not to nervous when speaking in front of people. It can also improve member speaking skills in order to become more comfortable when speaking in front of people.
Overall, we enjoyed doing this assignment. This is a great challenge for all of us where all members have to overcome those conflicts. Thus, it is a great team building experience for all the members as this can help everyone in future team oriented projects.
Nowadays, many countries already practice classroom decision making rather than only listen to the lecturers and follow whatever the lecturers have decided. This kind of motivation can make us become more efficient when doing something.
From this, we realize that it is importance for us to involve in the classroom decision making process. This is a sharing and learning process. Through participating in classroom decision making process, students are becoming more independent, responsible, aggressive, and more confidence. These outcomes are helping them in their future workplace. From participative decision making, we have the chance to absorb new idea from others. It provides us the sufficient knowledge for making the decision in future. Moreover, the student’s communication skill can be improved, which serve as a vital skill in our life.
As a conclusion, the learning outcomes for this assignment have been achieved and all solutions for the potential problems had been identified. Although the participative decision making process have some sort of potential problems, however, at overall it is still better than non-participative decision making.
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