August 24, 2013 11:05 PM Subscribe
Groupwork assignments - should I find a different partner?
posted by anonymous to human relations (14 answers total)
I'm currently working on an assignment for a class, typically taken by grad students and senior undergraduates.
This class has three assignments, all of which are done in pairs, or individually but marked the same. All of the assignments are fairly challenging, and will take quite a lot of work to complete. Having assignments done in pairs is normal for this kind of subject.
The person I'm currently working with: assignment has been out for 3 weeks, and is due in a bit over 24 hours. Has yet to contribute anything. They don't seem incompetent, merely typical student (leave everything to the last minute, spend spare time partying.) They've not delivered on what they've said they'll do. They have said the day the assignment is due they are free and will work on it - this has obvious problems.
The assignment itself: fairly long, fairly detailed. If we were starting from scratch now, we would not finish it. Also, this is the easy assignment - the next two are more difficult.
Me: I care about my grade. I'm also fairly busy - I can't leave things to the last minute, because I'm usually doing something then (like working.) I don't care about 'fairness' a lot, but I do get more out of a class when I'm working with someone. I feel bad if I don't give a partner a chance to contribute, yet I also get particularly stressed when someone says they'll do something and they don't.
I think it's partly that we're not that compatible in how we do things. I try and do things early. They try and do things on the due date.
(For what it's worth, there are no language issues here, nor is the person in question a mediocre student. I don't think they are trying to sponge off me. The groupwork policy is basically 'you get the same mark. Don't like it? Work alone.' There are no concerns of plagiarism or anything like that.)
1) Stick with current partner. Do all the work as if I was working alone, be pleasantly surprised when they contribute.
2) Explain to partner we have incompatible styles of working together. Switch partners. I have a friend whose partner dropped the class a week back - we have been unofficially sharing helpful references and explaining things to each other... just like a good group does, excluding actually talking about the assignment specifics. They also don't leave things to the last minute.
What is my question/Why have I not already switched partners?
- How can I best explain this to previous partner, without... creating resentment?
I'd also like to avoid seeming like I 'dropped' a partner mid-course for no good reason, since in future courses I'll need to work in a pair with the same cohort of people.
- What would you do in this situation?