Effective Teamwork and Communication Minor

  • Five women are seated around a table in an office, talking and taking notes
  • Employers want to hire those who can work cooperatively with other team members to increase information flow, creativity, and productivity. This minor—open to all students, all majors—best illustrates the achievement of this skill set to future employers. Most students can add this minor with only 5–7 additional credits.

    Employers Highly Value Interprofessional Skills

    The Effective Teamwork and Communication minor is unique in that it links the foundational theory of interprofessional skills to students’ fields of study, preparing them to succeed in the twenty-first century.

    This new minor is our answer to employers’ demands. Research shows 90 percent of employers rank interprofessional skills as equally or more important than field-specific skills, regardless of the field.

    This Minor Helps You Succeed in the Job Market By:

    • Adding a credential that stands out to employers who are hiring
    • Training you in new approaches to teamwork, leadership, communication, group dynamics, and interpersonal practices
    • Providing opportunities for advanced, team-based research—sure to impress potential employers
    • Preparing you for job or graduate-school interviews
    • Developing your ability to solve complex, interdisciplinary questions with other students from other majors
  • Apply Early to the Minor, Before Scheduling

    Students who are interested in the Effective Teamwork and Communication minor are advised to take SOC 161 (instead of SOC 151) and THTR 161 (instead of THTR 101) their first year at IUP. Students should declare the minor early with the appropriate form (PDF)  to receive proper advising by the director of Team and Leadership Studies, Professor Justin Fair.

    Pair the Teamwork and Communication Minor with a Leadership Minor

    You can enhance your skills by pairing the Teamwork and Communication minor with one of the following leadership minors. Many of the same core courses are required, making double minoring easier. Students who are interested in double minoring should take SOC 161 and THTR 161 their first year at IUP.

    Additional leadership minor for those wishing to double minor:

    • Military Leadership (for those students in ROTC)
  • Skillful Team Players Create Positive Outcomes

    Have you ever wondered why people don’t like to work on group projects? What makes group work so painful, when it is so necessary? Why is it so valued by employers who seek out talented employees who can work effectively in teams?

    In this minor, you’ll examine each team member’s expectations, attitudes, and beliefs, and explore new thinking on the best practices for working with others. Through foundational theories and hands-on applications, you’ll gain insight that can propel you ahead of other job seekers.

    Among the Topics Covered in Your Courses:

    • Problem solving in team environments within your field of study
    • Communicating to coworkers in different fields of study
    • Presenting arguments and information
    • Understanding how your (and other team members’) beliefs, attitudes, and actions affect the team’s productivity
    • Exploring how all types of diversity add information, strength, and perspective to teams
    • Comparing leader and team member approaches
    • Navigating group and team dynamics—including motivation, conflict, and work/life balance
    • Highlighting how your interprofessional skill set enhances your field-of-study skill set

    Some Classes Required for Your Degree Count Toward the Minor

    The minor was designed to add minimal credits, allowing even the most credit-packed majors to take the minor. Although the minor requires 18–20 credits, most majors will only need to take 5–7 additional credits to earn the minor. Some of the classes taken for your liberal studies or major requirements can also count toward the Effective Teamwork and Communication minor.

    Courses Needed for the Minor Include (PDF):

    • COMM 261: Teamwork and Communication Skills for College and Career
    • LDSP 361: Introduction to Leadership
    • SOC 161: Foundations of Sociology: Social Relations in Groups and Organizations
    • THTR 161: Introduction to Theater: Interpersonal Practices
    • Any Interdisciplinary Teamwork Course: One course approved as a Teamwork-Intensive section (T-Course) course
    • TMWK 461: Teamwork and Communication in Research, and independent study, honors thesis, or undergraduate research

    Courses in the minor that also count as other degree requirements:

    Course Number Course name Liberal Studies/Major Requirement
    THTR 161 Introduction to Theater: Interpersonal Practices Counts as a Fine Arts requirement
    SOC 161
    Foundations of Sociology: Social Relations in Groups and Organizations Counts as a Social Science requirement
    COMM 261 Teamwork and Communication Skills for College and Career
    Counts as an Elective in Oral Communication and Information Literacy
    T-Course Any one course approved as a Teamwork-Intensive section (T-Course)
    Students are encouraged to take a teamwork-intensive course that is a required course or elective in their major.

    Independent study, honors thesis, or research
    Some majors may require research, independent study, or an honors thesis.