Discussion: Meaning-Making Tools

Note: Please read the Introduction to all Discussions. Then proceed to participate in the required Discussion A, and your choice of Discussion B or C. There is also an Optional Open Forum you may participate in at any time.

Discussion Introduction (Applies to Discussions A, B, and C)

Rocky Mountain photo.As you have been exploring qualitative data in this week’s Learning Resources, you may have considered problems that might be addressed by collecting this type of data. Once you have collected and interpreted data—whether quantitative or qualitative—you still have the important step of communicating your conclusions to others.

Telling a story is a great way to communicate an idea. Just as a picture might be worth a thousand words, a story of words can paint a picture and impart deep insight. The speeches assigned in this week’s Learning Resources contain stories told by the speakers. Similarly, in the Discussions that follow, you read scenarios that are types of stories that describe situations. Through these stories, rather than data, you may gain meaning and understanding of a problem.

Photo credit: Permission language: Romero, N. (Photographer). (2013). Rocky Mountain Photo [Print Photo].

Discussion A (Required for all students)

Each of the three speeches in this week’s Learning Resources deals with a problem in society. The speaker identifies a problem and uses stories to illustrate the problem and suggest possible solutions. These stories are used as meaning-making tools in the presentations. Select one speech to address in this Discussion.

Submit an evaluation of how, in the speech you selected, the speaker’s stories add to or subtract from your understanding of the problem as it is described. State whether the speaker used stories effectively. Provide support for your position.

By Day 3

Post a minimum of 100 words to Discussion Question A.

Be sure to support your ideas by connecting them to at least one of this week’s Learning Resources.

Additionally, you may optto include an academic resource you have identified or something you have read, heard, seen, or experienced.

By Day 5

Respond to the posts of at least two different colleagues. One must be a response to a colleague’s post about the question you did not select. Respond in the one of the following ways:

  • Share an insight from having read your colleague’s posting.
  • Expand on your colleague’s posting.
Discussion B (Select B or C)

During a job interview for a position that requires considerable conflict management, the interviewer presents a scenario to the job applicant and asks how she or he would respond. As you read the interview scenario below, consider what the hiring committee hopes to glean from the qualitative data they obtain from the job applicant’s response.

The Interview Scenario: You are in line at large discount store. The checkout clerk begins to berate the customer ahead of you, using inappropriate language, offensive comments, and bullying behavior. The customer becomes cowed and apologetic. While berating the customer, the clerk looks at you, as if challenging you to do something about it. Explain how you would respond to this situation.

Submit a brief explanation of what the hiring committee hopes to glean from the qualitative data they obtain from the job applicant’s response. Then, state whether you think the hiring committee can make an accurate assessment of the job applicant’s skills based on this response.

By Day 3

Post a minimum of 100 words to your choice of Discussion Question B.

Be sure to support your ideas by connecting them to at least one of this week’s Learning Resources. Additionally, you may optto include an academic resource you have identified or something you have read, heard, seen, or experienced.

By Day 5

Respond to the posts of at least two different colleagues. One must be a response to a colleague’s post about the question you did not select. Respond in the one of the following ways:

  • Share an insight from having read your colleague’s posting.
  • Expand on your colleague’s posting.
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