Monday, 28 November 2016

How to Prepare For Group Discussion

Firstly let us understand what the Group Discussion is and why it is an important part of any admission to an institute or recruitment process of any organization.    




As the name suggests the Group Discussion is a formal discussion amongst group members. Referring it to the admission process of an institute, the concept of Group Discussion was incorporated in the admission process a couple of years back because it was felt that the students in an institute selected through personal interaction without group discussion lacked some critical soft skills like interpersonal and behavioral skills. Lack of these skills reflected badly on learning of the students as learning is a collective academic endeavor which needs team work for excellence in their studies. So institutes thought to introduce group discussion in their drives to gauge group dynamic behavior of the prospective candidates which could be a tangible parameter to assess their personality traits. Since, it has not been a part of the regular academic curriculum in schools and colleges therefore students usually face a lot of problem in this area of the Selection Process.

Let us first understand the finer details of why Group Discussion is conducted.

Most institutes today are very clear about the skills and knowledge that they look for in a student while screening. That is why, Group Discussion has been a part of the Selection process for admission into most of the Business Schools.

The personality traits and skills that are usually being looked for in a Group Discussion are: Communication Skills Interpersonal Skills, Leadership Skills, Motivational Skills, Team Building Skills,Tolerance, Listening skills, Presentation Skills, Analytically, Logical skills, creativity/out-of-the-box thinking. So, it's very important to assess your current strengths in all these areas and accordingly put-in efforts to overcome your shortcomings.

Besides, body language and attitude is being given focus while GD is being conducted.

Another important reason for institutes to keep GD as an elimination round and acts as a filter to prune unwanted students lacking these skills.

In nut shell, GD is basically a methodological tool used by an institution to gauge whether a candidate has certain personality traits and/or skills that it desires in its students. Normally, the group of candidates is given a topic or a situation, given a few minutes to think about the same, and then asked to discuss it among themselves for some time. Topics can be from a wide range of issues. It could be a topic on current events, business news, sports or anything very general. The wider your reading interests, the better prepared you will be to face the group discussion.

A Group discussion tests how you function as a part of a team. Greater Noida College of Technology sharing some tips for effective participation in a GD or how to prepare in a GD:

Understand - Understand the topic before attempting to contribute. Jot down all necessary details in bullet form on a piece of paper

Initiate - Take the initiative to begin the discussion, if possible, as it will give you bonus marks.

Structure/organize - Structure or organize the data or arguments logically - justify your stand with suitable and verifiable data.

Act as a leader – if the topic digresses from the main track, try to bring back the   discussion.

Act as a motivator – Try bringing all participants on board to discuss the topic but after you put your views across the group.

Assert- Be assertive not aggressive.

Articulate- Work continuously towards articulating your ideas into meaningful sentences to make the best impact. Be clear in your speech.

Use Body language - Use non-verbal communication to emphasize points as it will give more weight age to your ideas.

Listen- Be an attentive listener also so that you can collect relevant data to summarize.

Quality, not quantity matters- it's not 'how much' you say, but 'what' you say that's important.

Speech clarity – your words should be clear and loud with confidence.

To prepare for a group discussion, keep track of latest happenings and current affairs round the world. Being aware of current affairs, issues and happenings reflect our inquisitiveness to learn and know about the world we are living in. Make a habit of reading newspapers and magazines, watch interesting documentaries and profiles on television to get a wider perspective on issues.

As an individual, your intelligence, general knowledge and core competencies are measured through the aptitude test. As a team player, your ability to lead and play in team is measured in the GD. 

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