Ptlls Ground Rules

Analyse different ways in which you would establish ground rules with your learners which underpin behaviour and respect for others

A learning environment needs to develop a safe setting that fosters respect and co-operation between students and tutors.   Boundaries and conditions, in the form of ground rules, can help establish and promote an effective learning experience.   Ground rules can be dictated by a tutor, stipulated by the students or mutually agreed by students and tutor.   The outcome must ultimately define what is acceptable and unacceptable behaviour.

Ground rules need to be established at the beginning of the course (Gravells, 2011) in order to achieve the desired outcomes but may need to be balanced   against the composition of the group or imposed due to statutory legislation or organisational policies.

At the start of a course, the tutor may employ a dogmatic approach to establishing ground rules.   Disseminated to the group without discussion or negotiation, this approach would likely save time and could assist short courses with limited time or a specific audience.   With no opportunity for discussion this approach may cause students to feel undervalued and possibly resentful towards the tutor or establishment.   Furthermore, it is likely to undermine the opportunity to form a mutual and respectful relationship between the students and the tutor.   Respect towards the tutor is likely to suffer.

Using icebreakers, group discussion or mapping, students could determine their own ground rules.   Whilst this method can promote a high degree of autonomy and interaction between students it may not meet the formal needs of the tutor or their organisation.
Petty (2004:102) states that “it is sometimes worth negotiating rules with students.”   By working together through discussion and negotiation rules can be established that promote a high degree of student involvement and ownership.   Although slower, this method provides the tutor with a degree of...