Definition: Organizational Behavior notes, “Groupthink is the tendency of highly cohesive groups to value consensus at the price of decision quality” (McShane & Von Glinow, 2008, p. 257).
Summary: The article entitled “The Turn to Online Research is Narrowing the Range of Modern Scholarship, a New Study Suggests” written by Rebecca Tuhus-Dubrow (2008) discusses how the internet has made accessing research and other things on the internet extremely easy. The author asserts that by using search engines, which often rank the importance of a result by popularity, students leave themselves vulnerable to groupthink when conducting research results (Tuhus-Dubrow, 2008). Tuhus-Dubrow (2008) suggests that this this can be mitigated by using multiple sources to help provide a more well-rounded research pool.
Discussion: The internet has made performing research for students a matter of seconds. Students used to have to go to the library and conduct research out of textbooks and other publications but now by simply typing your subject in a search engine a variety of choices are at your fingertips. “Millions of journal articles are available online, enabling scholars to find material they never would have encountered at their university libraries” (Tuhus-Dubrow, 2008, para 2).
The internet just like everything else has it costs as well as benefits. Just like the article states the internet has started to dominate people’s lives. People rely on the internet for everything for both work and personal use.
The internet is considered to be a new form of groupthink because when searching for articles students are not highly selective in the choices they make and they tend to pick one of the few search choices that comes up. Also, the other alternatives of research are now not used due to the convenience of the internet. Tuhus-Dubrow (2008) make the case that outcomes should be portrayed by search engines in some organized way because most websites depend on devices that classify primarily in a couple of ways. The ways they are classified are by chronological order and by popularity (Tuhus-Dubrow, 2008). If a search engine filters results by popularity then this is groupthink because others are succumbing to the will of the group by choosing the same articles that show up first as results.
Do you feel that internet search engines cause groupthink? If so, elaborate on why you think this. Do you feel that this is why many professors at Liberty University want students to not choose the same discussion board topics? I personally feel that the reason professors want us to chose different topics is so that we will not reflect the same views and chose the same articles which would therefore be groupthink.
Adler, S. (2009). At davos, beware the tide of groupthink. Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved from: http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/feb2009/db2009021_878209.htm
McShane, S., & Von Glinow, M.A. (2013). Organizational behavior (6th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.
Mulrine, A. (2008). The army trains a skeptics corps to battle groupthink. US News. Retrieved from: http://www.usnews.com/articles/news/world/2008/05/15/the-army-trains-a-skeptics-corps-to-battle-groupthink.html
Tuhus-Dubrow, R. (2008). Group think: The turn to online research is narrowing the range of modern scholarship, a new study suggests. Boston.com.Retrieved from: http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/ideas/articles/2008/11/23/group_think/
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