What is Program Media in Social Group Work


  1. Introduction
  2. What is program Media
  3. Principles of Planning a Program
  4. Types of Programs in Social Group Work 
  5. Characteristics of Program 
  6. Use of Program Media 


Group Work -Gisela Konopka (1963) states that social group work is a method of social work which helps individuals to enhance their social functioning through a purposeful group experience. However, Allan and Brown and others have also pointed out that group work can emphasis action and influence as well as reaction and adoption hence they argue that., group work provides a platform in which individuals help each other and method of helping group and individuals as well. According to Lawrence Shulman (1979) group work as a mutual aid system,' the worker sees to help people to help each other. To understand the group clearly let's examine the various definition of social group work.

Read : MCQ on Program Media in Social Group Work 

What is Programme Media in Social Group Work?

In Social Group Work, the knowledge is always translated among the group members by the Worker through the judicious use of ‘programmes. Programmes which work as a wonderful tool to enhance group relationship also include various other purposes like attaining improvement in members’ own environmental conditions, promoting a sense of achievement, sublimating, and channelizing certain impulses, actualizing problems in an on-going social situation and working through or articulating symbolically problems and feelings which members are unable to express verbally. Programme is a concept which, when broadly conceived, includes the entire range of activities, relationship, interactions, and experience that have been deliberately planned and carried out with help of the worker to meet the needs of the individuals and the group. Programme is a concept which broadly includes the entire range of activities, relationships, interactions, and experiences which have been deliberately planned & carried out with the help of workers to meet the needs of individuals & also groups.

Use of Programme Media largely because of its early linkages to the field of recreation, has given the group work a recreational and participative value. Often, group workers introduce varied tasks and media to supplement discussions, depending on the composition and goals of the group. For example, since verbal abilities are less developed among younger children, games and craft activities have been effectively used as part of their programmes. With adolescents and adults, on the other hand, several social activities and planning for group action are found effective. Within institutions client groups can be helped to explore problems of the social milieu by being permitted to undertake limited self-government. Many messages for social development and conscientization are given using folk media in villages and urban community groups. All these programme activities extend the opportunities for meaningful interaction among clients, significant involvement with social tasks and acquisition of valued interpersonal skills.

Principles of Program Planning 

  1. Programme-planning should be based upon a careful analysis of a factual situation.
  2. Problems for action are selected based on recognized needs of people.
  3. Objectives and solutions are to be feasible and offer satisfaction.
  4. Programme should be permanent and flexible to meet a long-term situation, short-term changes, and emergencies.
  5. Programme should have both balance and emphasis.
  6. Programme should have a definite plan of work.
  7. Programme planning is a continuous and coordinating process.
  8. Programme planning should be educational and directed towards bringing about desirable change.
  9. Program planning should have a provision for the evaluation of results.

Types of Program Media in Group Work

Programme Media are of different types. For any of the models or approaches or groups referred in any setting of group work practice, one or a combination of the following programme media can be used for diagnostic, problem-solving or treatment purposes. Games, storytelling, music, art works, collage preparation, skit, street plays, role plays, puppetry etc. are various types of program media that are commonly used.

1- Play/ Games:

Games as programme media has the most visible and tangible results. These are simple to handle also. The use of all types of age-appropriate games (physical, intellectual, memory, sensory) including playing with blocks, toys, sand, and water can be used in the group. Several games both outdoor and & indoor can be organized. Apart from the popular games, most of which do not require costly recourses, the worker can use his/ her creativity in designing new games and modifying the prevalent games. In Indian settings outdoor games such as Cricket, Football, Kabbadi, Hide& Seek, Treasure Hunt, Kho Kho etc. can be easily used, because of its popularity. Board games, games where tasks can be assigned to each team like collecting small balls of different colors, putting thread into a set of needles, filling up water in a bottling using small spoons etc. can be assigned as indoor games. -

Example 1: - The group is divided into four sub-groups. Four color papers are taken and are cut into five-six pieces of squares. The color paper pieces are mixed and distributed in 4 envelops. Each group is given an envelope. Each subgroup must complete a single-color square. 

The sub-group that completes the task first will win. The rules are:

  1. The members cannot talk to each other.
  2. They are permitted to pass on the piece if they do not need it, to the member on their left.

2-Drama, mime, use of puppets and masks and role-play:

In these, members of the group are asked to act in various parts which have significance to their problems or difficulties. Individuals thereby gain insight into their own behavior and that of others

Example: In a group of adolescents, where Life Skills are to be imparted, the students are asked to perform role-play for simulating decision-making skill to overcome peer pressure.

3-Singing & Storytelling: -

These are other media where the members can be encouraged to create their own stories and rhymes on given topics. They can also be given half the story and asked to complete the rest of the story. The exercise has the entertainment factor for sure. This can be applied in any age group. Subgroups can be asked to continue the story spontaneously. The groups will compete to complete the story sequence. Apart from entertainment it reveals the nature of the personality of the group members. Their attitude towards life situations will be flowing out naturally and spontaneously through the characters in the story.

4-Music and arts and crafts:

The former which can be vocal or instrumental on a solo or group basis depicts and provide an outlet for all varieties of human emotions whereas the latter, through work with diverse materials such as wood, clay, paper, straw, or paints, is given ample scope for self-expression, creativity, balance, and harmony. Art and Craft are used as a medium in group work for engaging the members and helping them to express themselves. Poster making, Collage preparation, etc. are powerful media to focus attention on any problem of social relevance

5. Talk:

 This is the action most people associate immediately with group activities especially of a problem-solving or therapeutic nature dealing with critical topics related to the client's personal lives. Included in this activity are small group discussions, lectures, seminars, conversations, sensitivity games and encounter sessions. (A much-used mode of communication, talk is an essential part of most of the other activities).

6. Movement:

 This kind of activity is being used, as counter to the rather overemphasized verbal communication just referred to. Activities include exploration of touch, non-verbal communication, dance, mime, and physical encounter.

7. Work:

This activity speaks for itself and covers projects and tasks of all kinds of complexity which involve an ongoing process of cooperative endeavor.

Characteristics of Program Media

  1. Simple and easy to understand
  2. Applicable to any type of groups viz, children, aged, adults, differently abled etc.
  3. Easy to replicate
  4. Planned properly before implementation
  5. The recreation factor is high
  6. Highly economical
  7. Strongly delivers the message among the group members 

Use of Program Media

  1. Provides individuals an opportunity to find to what extent his/ her personality must be changed to become good/ socially acceptable.
  2. Improves socialization among the group members.
  3. Integrates goals & achievement of the group members.
  4. Unites the members towards achieving the common goal.
  5. Good relationship among the members.
  6. Helps in the settlement of conflicts among people and to control their conflicts with one another.
  7. Provides recreation
  8. Improves communication 
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