Persuasive Argument as a Determinant of Group Polarization: A study of Selected Kenyan Secondary School Disciplinary Panels

Peter J.O. Aloka, Olaniyi Bojuwoye


The study investigated whether persuasive arguments in the dynamic interactions among disciplinary panel members influenced the decision making leading to group polarization among members of selected secondary school disciplinary panels in Rongo district of Kenya. The study adopted a qualitative approach and within which a phenomenology design was used. The population for the study comprised all Kenyan schools with behaviour management practices and School Disciplinary Panels. Ten schools were involved and a sample of ten participants selected from co-educational (n = 5), boys only (n = 3) and girls’ only (n = 2) schools participated in the study. Data was collected using interview protocol and analyzed using the thematic framework. The study found out that, the persuasive arguments among panel members during the disciplinary hearing deliberations influenced the panel members to make good quality group decisions. It was recommended that, disciplinary panels should be broad-based, and that, there should be some form of checks and balance in the operations of school disciplinary panels in order to avoid inaccurate decisions that may occur from negative effects of persuasive arguments.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n10p348

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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