Enhancing mental models for team effectiveness

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Authors
  1. Jobidon, M-E.
  2. Muller-Gass, A.
  3. Duncan, M.
  4. Blais, A-R.
Corporate Authors
Defence R&D Canada - Toronto, Toronto ONT (CAN)
Abstract
The success of Canadian Forces operations relies on team members working cooperatively towards shared goals. It is commonly recognized that some form of shared knowledge contributes positively to team functioning, and as such the concept of team mental models (TMM) has been the focus of many research endeavours (e.g., Edwards et al., 2006; Marks et al., 2002; Mathieu et al., 2010). The purpose of this study was to investigate whether enhancing TMM, more specifically task models (knowledge on task procedures and strategies, potential contingencies and environmental constraints) and team interaction models (knowledge about roles and responsibilities, role interdependencies, information flow, etc.) improved team processes and performance in dynamic situations. Fifty-four participants took part in this study, for a total of 27 two-person teams. C3Fire, a simulation of forest firefighting, was used as task environment. Each team was assigned to one of three learning conditions meant to manipulate TMM: task (additional information on environmental dynamics pertinent to the firefighting task), team (additional information on the roles of each team member and possible interaction strategies) and control (no additional information). Task complexity was varied through transparency of courses of action (COA) to investigate whether it moderates the effect of TMM on team effectiveness. Measures of team performance and team processes were gathered. The results showed that the manipulation

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Keywords
team;team mental model;dynamic situations;team effectiveness;team performance;team processes;coordination;communication;task complexity
Report Number
DRDC-TORONTO-TR-2009-202 — Technical Report
Date of publication
01 Sep 2011
Number of Pages
41
DSTKIM No
CA037070
CANDIS No
536730
Format(s):
Electronic Document(PDF)

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