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Review article

Dynamics of Small Educational Groups

Josip Janković ; NGO Poticaj, Zagreb, Croatia
Anita Bagić ; Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina; Study of Social Work, Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Ilija Krišto ; Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

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The paper deals with groups and group work. The author offers a definition of a group and continues with researching structure, function and concern of science for groups through history. The analysis revealed a very lasting lively interest in philosophy, medicine, early educational thought and numerous modern sciences like sociology, psychology, social work and many new psychotherapy directions. Special attention is given to functioning of the groups, their characteristics, their communication and group dynamics as the major paper topic.
The special place is given to small educational-therapeutic groups, their structure, functions, roles and group dynamics, of course, which is condition for accomplishing of goals. That is why a group works through various group phenomena which gain special meaning in an educational group with psychotherapeutic character, because in them the „self experience“, helping, or therapeutic process occurs simultaneously with the educational one.
Due to multiple targets, interactions and possible outcomes in these groups, group processes are extraordinary complex. This is why the direction, quality and intensity of their course are crucial for group members’ successful personal growth and development, mastering skills and achieving the goals set in a parallel experiential and therapeutic process.
The final section of the paper provides guidelines for initiating research projects aimed at further study of the dynamics of small group training.


small educational groups; group dynamics; group processes

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