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Building consensus: The dynamics of an interdisciplinary team

1 December 1994


This qualitative research paper is concerned with studying the dynamics of a middle school interdisciplinary team. The purpose of this research is to examine factors which influence the decision making processes of an interdisciplinary team. The investigation of team dynamics is conducted with the use of interviews and observations. All information gathered is evaluated and synthesized into emerging themes. Literature in the field of interdisciplinary teams helped create research questions that are the framework of this study. The questions guiding the research are: What decisions does the team make? What role does the amount of planning time play in what decisions are made? How does the team arrive at decisions? How do team members evaluate their success? Does the relationship between team members influence team effectiveness? This research yielded several broad results. Planning time is essential to team productivity. The role of team leader is a vital component that should be a focus during team formation. The relationship between teams and the administration needs to be one of cooperation, in order for the team to function effectively


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