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Group Process and Dynamics (COUN – 6250 – 1)

The Association for Specialist in Group Work and CACREP recommends core training in group to include a minimum of 10 clock hours (20 clock hours recommended) observation of and participation in a group experience as a group member and/or as a group leader.



If a group member is demonstrating difficult behaviors such as silence or monopolizing, the leader should first consider transferring the member to individual sessions.



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When a counselor does not know a member’s sexual identity, the counselor should inquire during the initial stage of the group.



Counselors place great weight on client modeling and behavioral experimentation, while members value self-understanding and universality.



The strength of the therapeutic alliance is a good predictor of therapy outcome.



The group leader should always forbid group socialization outside of the group setting.



Training in individual counseling is sufficient to become a group leader.



Group Counseling is less effective than individual counseling.



Prospective group members need to be given all of the following information about the group that they are thinking of joining EXCEPT:

A. Goals
B. Procedures
C. Expected outcomes
D. Fees and time parameters
E. Guaranteed outcomes
Which group work specialist is most likely to teach members to cope with an immediate life crisis or developmental life event, with the goal of preventing an array of educational and psychological disturbances?

A. Counseling
B. Psychotherapy
C. Psychoeducational
D. Task facilitation
During the transition stage, anxiety is:

A. High
B. The result of external factors
C. The result of internal factors
D. All of the above
E. A and C
When a group member takes on an attitude of superiority, the group leader is advised to:

A. Ignore the member’s irritating behavior so as to not reinforce it
B. Ask other members to comment on how they are affected by the member’s behavior
C. Give the member an ultimatum to either stop the behavior or leave the group
D. Use humor to lessen the tension in the group
E. Dismiss the member from the group for creating a hostile group environment
Which of the following statements about conflict is FALSE?

A. It is to be avoided at all costs.
B. It often carries a negative connotation.
C. It is inevitable in all relationships and groups.
D. Unexplored conflict is expressed in defensive behavior.
E. If it is handled successfully, the level of trust in the group will increase.
The therapeutic factor in groups that involves the release of pent-up feelings is:

A. Intimacy
B. Empathy
C. Catharsis
D. Caring
E. Feedback
Research summaries have identified which of the following guidelines for group leadership practice?

A. Leaders should strive for an impersonal and detached leadership style.
B. Leaders should disclose the details of their personal lives to build trust with members regardless of the type of group.
C. Leaders should adopt a more controlling leadership style, especially in the beginning stages.
D. Leaders should set and reinforce clear norms as one way to establish cohesion within the group.
E. Leaders should avoid teaching members skills of active participation in the group process and allow members to discover the importance of these skills on their own.
An effective group member is characterized by:

A. An openness to change
B. Having specific goal
C. A willingness to explore problems in the group
D. An ability to express fears and negative feelings
E. All of the above
During a group’s initial phase, members can best build trust by:

A. Waiting until someone takes the first risk and then opening up
B. Revealing their lack of trust
C. Relying on “trust excersises” initiated by the leader (e.g., falling backward and trusting others to catch you)
D. Sharing non-intimate details about themselves
E. Waiting until they feel comfortable before sharing inner struggles and fears
Which of the following is a characteristic of a nonworking group?

A. Members are unwilling to take action to change.
B. Feedback is rejected defensively.
C. Feedback is rejected defensively.
D. Members sometimes gang up on one person.
E. All of the above
Which of the following is NOT considered a main task of group leaders during the formation of a group?

A. Presenting a proposal to the proper administrators and getting the idea accepted
B. Developing a wide array of group techniques that will be used for each of the sessions
C. Conducting pre-group interviews for screening and orientation purposes
D. Providing potential members with relevant information necessary for them to make an informed choice about participation
E. Organizing the practical details necessary to launch a successful group
Which stage is most clearly associated with dealing with per¬sonal issues and translating insight into action both in the group and outside it?

A. Transition
B. Final
C. Initial
D. Working
E. Pre-group
When helping group members deal with their feelings of separa¬tion, it is important for the leader to:

A. Remind them they can create meaningful relationships outside the group setting
B. Facilitate open discussion of feelings of loss and sadness
C. Be able to deal with his or her own feelings about the termination of the group
D. All of the above
E. None of the above
The major task of the final stage in a group’s development is:

A. Development of trust
B. Development of group cohesion
C. Achieving intimacy
D. Consolidation of learning
E. Development of a group identity
The therapeutic factor in groups that involves actively doing what is necessary for change is:

A. Acceptance
B. Power
C. Intimacy
D. Willingness to risk and trust
E. Catharsis
The problem behavior of advice giving involves:

A. Offering a perception
B. Offering an opinion
C. Telling people what they should feel and do
D. All of the above
E. A and B
When making difficult ethical decisions as a group leader, it is helpful to do all of the following EXCEPT:

A. Know the ethical codes of your professional organiza¬tion
B. Consult with colleagues
C. Get supervision and training during the early stages of your development as a leader
D. Base your practice on sound, informed, and responsible judgment
E. Make your decisions in a vacuum without getting the input of colleagues or supervisors
When group leaders are opening a session, it is important for them to:

A. Focus on the first person who shares important personal information
B. Link the coming session with the last one
C. Give each member an opportunity to state what he or she wants from the upcoming session
D. All of the above
E. B and C
Which of the following statements is NOT true regarding ways group members can be encouraged to get more out of their experience?
A. Evaluate your involvement in the group regularly.
B. Wait until a group is in its later stages before you ask for time for yourself.
C. Decide beforehand what issues you want to explore during the group sessions.
D. Avoid making interpretations of an abstract and intellectual nature.
E. Concentrate on making personal and direct statements to others in the group.
3 points


Concerning a leader’s responsibility to secure informed consent of group members, the ASGW’s Best Practice Guidelines states that all of the following informa¬tion should be provided in writing EXCEPT for information:
A. On the nature and purposes of the group
B. On confidentiality and the exceptions to confidentiality
C. On the role and responsibility of group members and leaders
D. Regarding every technique that might be introduced
E. Pertaining to the qualifications of the leader
3 points


When helping group members to define their personal goals, it is important to remember which of the following?
A. This should be done only during the initial stages of a group.
B. Members should not change or modify their goals during the course of their group.
C. Many people state their goals in broad terms initially.
D. Goal setting should be postponed until the transition stage, when members have a clearer sense of what the group can offer.

3 points


Which of the following are ways a group leader can make use of the skill of facilitating?
A. Working to create a climate of safety and acceptance
B. Helping members express their fears and expectations
C. Taking steps to cover up conflict among group members
D. All of the above
E. A and B
3 points


Which stage has the focus of applying what has been learned in the group and putting it to use in everyday life?
A. Transition
B. Final
C. Pre-group
D. Initial
E. Working
3 points


All of the following statements are true EXCEPT:
A. Transference consists of the feelings that both client and therapist project onto each other
B. Transference feelings should be brought out openly in the group
C. If all members see the leader as aloof and distant, their reactions may not be rooted in transference
D. Group leaders in training should explore their feelings toward certain members with their supervisor
E. Transference feelings usually have to do with relation¬ships the members experienced in the past
3 points


Which of the following is NOT helpful in closing group sessions?
A. Stopping the group halfway through the session for members to assess their involvement
B. Having members evaluate their progress once they have completed half of the group sessions
C. Making sure everyone leaves the sessions feeling com¬pletely comfortable
D. Encouraging members to give each other feedback
E. Allowing members to leave the session with some unan¬swered questions
3 points


Regarding the ethical issue of the freedom to withdraw from a group, which statement is FALSE?
A. Members ultimately have the right to withdraw from a group.
B. Procedures for leaving a group should be explained to all members during the initial group session.
C. It is the sole responsibility of the group leader to determine whether a group experience is productive or counterproductive for each group member.
D. Leaders should discuss the possible risks involved in leaving a group prematurely.
E. Although members have the right to leave a group, it is important that they inform both the group leader and the members before making their final decision.
3 points


Which of the following statements about confrontation in the group setting is NOT true?
A. Confrontation can be an act of caring.
B. Trust can be greatly inhibited if confrontations are not handled appropriately.
C. A caring confrontation involves attempting to protect a person’s feelings by sharing only a portion of your reaction to them.
D. Confrontation involves inviting members to examine incongruities in their lives.
E. Appropriate confrontations can increase the level of trust in a group.

Which of the following are helpful guidelines for appropriate and responsible confrontations?
A. One purpose of confrontation is to develop more gen¬uine relationships with others.
B. Sensitivity is an important element of confrontation.
C. Confrontations are more effective if the focus is not on specific behaviors.
D. All of the above
E. A and B
3 points


When a leader is experiencing strong feelings about what he or she perceives to be resistance, a powerful intervention is to:
A. Pay primary attention to the problem in the group
B. Pay primary attention to particular group members
C. Deal with his or her own feelings
D. Allow the feelings to dissipate on their own
3 points


Which stage is characterized by dealing with conflict, defen¬siveness, and resistance?
A. Working
B. Transition
C. Final
D. Initial
E. Pre-group
3 points


How can involvement in a therapeutic group as a member be helpful to beginning group leaders?
A. It is a more appropriate place to examine their own problems.
B. They can empathize with what it is like to be a group member.
C. It can serve as a valuable learning experience for under¬standing group process.
D. All of the above
E. B and C
3 points


The group leadership skill of interpreting involves all of the following EXCEPT:
A. Offering possible explanations for certain behaviors or symptoms
B. Helping a member move beyond an impasse
C. Discouraging members from making their own interpretations
D. Presenting an interpretation in the form of a hypothesis or hunch
E. Giving the person time to consider the validity of the interpretation

3 points


Using a theoretical framework to guide your practice as a group leader is important for all of the following reasons EXCEPT:
A. It tells you exactly what to do in every session.
B. It helps to define both your role and the members’ roles in a group.
C. It provides a frame of reference for understanding and evaluating the world of the client.
D. It helps you to select appropriate techniques in meeting the goals of the members.
E. It helps you to evaluate the outcomes of the group as a whole and of the individual members.
3 points


Which of the following statements is NOT true as it relates to the topic of self-disclosure?
A. The most useful kind of self-disclosure is that which has been carefully thought out first.
B. Appropriate self-disclosure can open doors of self-knowledge.
C. Appropriate self-disclosure can encourage other mem¬bers to open up.
D. Appropriate self-disclosure expresses present concerns.
E. Appropriate self-disclosure helps build trust.

3 points


Which of the following is considered a psychological risk of participating in a therapeutic group?
A. Confidentiality may be breached
B. Scapegoating may occur
C. Members may experience major disruptions in their lives
D. Members may end up feeling vulnerable and defenseless
E. All of the above
3 points


The therapeutic factor in groups that involves affirming a person’s right to have his or her feelings and values is:
A. Caring
B. Acceptance
C. Empathy
D. Intimacy
E. Feedback
3 points


How does group counseling differ from group therapy?
A. It deals primarily with conscious problems.
B. It is not aimed at major personality changes.
C. It is not concerned with treating psychotic disorders.
D. All of the above
E. B and C
3 points


Which of the following feelings and behaviors is/are charac¬teristic of the transition stage of the group process?
A. Challenges to the leader
B. Resistance
C. Anxiety
D. Interpersonal conflict
E. All of the above
3 points


In regard to open groups and closed groups, it is accurate to say that:
A. Closed groups enable members to interact with a greater variety of people.
B. The rapid changing of members in open groups can result in a lack of cohesion.
C. In closed groups, new members are typically allowed to join every few sessions, but they are expected to remain for the duration of the group.
D. Most therapists find it much easier to foster cohesion in open groups than in closed groups.

3 points


Which of the following statements is true about dealing with unfinished business in the final phase of a group?
A. Members can be given the opportunity to identify what else they can do before the final session.
B. As much as possible, unfinished business needs to be ex¬pressed and worked through.
C. Members should be encouraged to discuss issues they have with each other.
D. Members should be encouraged to decide what they will do with some of their unfinished business.
E. All of the above
3 points


Which of the following statements illustrates an ineffective confrontation?
A. “You are a phony! You are always smiling and that’s not real.”
B. “I feel uncomfortable with you because I’m afraid of what you think of me.”
C. “I find it very difficult to be open with you.”
D. “I don’t like it that I often feel inadequate when I am with you.”
E. “Many of the things you say really hurt me.”

3 points


Which of the following is NOT typical of the feelings, reactions, and be¬haviors of members who are in the initial stage of their group’s progress?
A. Anxiety
B. A high degree of cohesiveness
C. A concern about being judged by others
D. Wondering if they will fit into the group
E. Uncertainty of what is expected
Which of the following is true of counseling groups?
A. They are never highly structured.
B. They are aimed at curing personality problems.
C. They focus on interpersonal relations among the mem¬bers.
D. They require diagnosis for the members.
E. They have a task facilitation emphasis.
3 points


The group leadership skill of blocking should NOT be used when group members:
A. Bombard others with questions
B. Tell lengthy stories
C. Break confidences
D. Invade privacy
E. Begin to cry
3 points


The group leadership skill of clarification involves which of the following?
A. Focusing on key underlying issues
B. Sorting out confused and conflicting feelings
C. Asking open-ended questions in order to understand what a group member is saying
D. A tool that can be valuable in the initial stages of an en¬counter
E. All of the above

3 points


Which of the following therapeutic factors must be present to prevent stagnation from occurring in the group?
A. Caring
B. Empathy
C. Acceptance
D. Confrontation
E. Intimacy
3 points


The purpose of preliminary screening sessions with prospec¬tive group members is to select those who:
A. Have needs and goals that are compatible with the estab¬lished goals of the group
B. Will not impede the group process
C. Will not have their well-being jeopardized by the group experience
D. All of the above
E. A and B
3 points


Which of the following statements is not true concerning the place of humor in groups?
A. Group work is inherently serious and intense and leaves little place for humor.
B. Effective feedback at times can be given in humorous ways.
C. Laughing at oneself can be extremely therapeutic.
D. Humor can help members see their problems from a new perspective.
3 points


Which of the following statements is true concerning the im¬portance of teaching members about group process?
A. If members are told too much of what to expect, there may be no spontaneous learning.
B. The more you teach the members, the more they will move away from dependency on the leader’s direction.
C. There is a delicate balance between providing too much structuring and failing to give enough information.
D. All of the above
E. A and C
3 points


Transference may be occurring when group members per¬ceive the leader as:

A. An expert
B. A “superperson”
C. A friend
D. All of the above
E. B and C

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