Group work is a term that means tasks that are to be completed in collaboration with the other members of the group. It means that the task has been assigned to some people who form a group and not only one individual.
It is unethical for the students with strong skills to work on assignments belonging to those with weak skills. The group work tasks ensure that students can work in collaboration with one another. This enhances teamwork, a factor that is ideal when it comes to the job market. Doing another person’s assignment is deceiving to the professor as he or she will think that the group is doing well whereas there are those who are left behind in the syllabus coverage and understanding. What those with strong skills should do is to assist the weaker students with an understanding of what the assignment requires and may assist in analyzing the various methods that one can use in dealing with the problem. Having those with strong skills do the assignments leads to the weaker students getting grades that do not belong to them. This is unethical as it amounts to academic cheating, which is illegal and may lead to one being dismissed out of the university.
Professor Mallory told the class that each was supposed to tackle and be responsible for a specific part of the assignment. For example, in Mehmet’s group, there were five parts to the question that they were to tackle. This means that each group member was supposed to deal with one part. The implication is that what the professor was to receive was work that has equal participation by all the group members and not a paper that was done by just a few members of the group.
John, Mary, and Susan had a negative attitude towards Mehmet and Kim. This is what led to them laughing at what the two had done. In redoing what Mehmet and Kim had done, the three had an attitude that the two international students could not handle the assignment as required. This meant lack of confidence in what the two could do towards the completion of the assignment. In the end, Mehmet and Kim ended up doing nothing and in the process did not understand what was required as evidenced by the poor grades they got from the midterm exams. In my view, the actions of the two were not ethical. In their argument, the grade they all got was the one assigned to all, and hence they should go ahead and do the assignments on behalf of their friends. They, therefore, participated in deceiving the teacher towards believing that the group was doing well and understood what he was teaching in class.
Mehmet and Kim come from countries where it is okay for one to help his friend in an assignment. This means that it was okay to them for John, Mary, and Susan to help them. In their understanding, it was okay for friends to help everyone to get a good grade. This meant that they did not feel any offense by just seating down and not doing anything or contributing anything to the group apart from stapling the papers and submitting to the professor. Their actions were unethical and meant academic dishonesty. The expectation is that they would have submitted their written work and wait for the professor to correct them and assist them in comprehending the concepts. It was unethical for them to not attend the English classes and deceive the professor that they understood what he was teaching.
Professor Mallory should have asked each student to submit his written work and defend it where necessary. Consequently, it would have been ideal if he sought more class-based essays to ensure that the students provided a good picture of the progress they are making in class. The same should have been extended to assignments where students should have been asked to work on individual papers and submit them to the professor for marking. This would have allowed the professor to get a good picture of the progress the students are making.
Mehmet and Kim can succeed in the program by first taking the English courses and improving their writing skills. This will make sure they can improve their status and be on par with the American students. Consequently, the two should engage the professor and their peers for assistance in some of the areas that they do not understand. This will enable them to understand the concepts and perform better in individual essays. By seeking assistance from their peers should not mean having their assignments done for them, rather it means that they can be assisted in understanding the concepts and analyzing the requirements for the assignments.
MBA professors should emphasize on the issue of group dynamics to the students. It helps the students understand that the groups are more effective if they are based on minimized conflicts as well as equal participation. The professors also need to make sure that each student can present that he or she did in front of the class. This will meant that even if the parts are done for them, then they have to make sure they understand everything to defend it effectively.