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Group and Individual Performance

Group and Individual Performance

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Published by David
This outstanding paper presents an analysis of studies done in the years 1920-1957 which contrast the quality of performance by individuals and by groups in diverse situations. Group and individual performance is considered in relation to judgment, learning, social facilitation, problem solving, memory and productivity.

This is a must read publication for anybody interested in social psychology, team work, group processes etc. Also psychology students looking for project ideas and or psychology experiments to replicate will find a goldmine of opportunites here.

This publication forms part of an initiative designed to make important public domain works in psychology freely available.

http://www.all-about-psychology.com/psychology-journal-articles.html
This outstanding paper presents an analysis of studies done in the years 1920-1957 which contrast the quality of performance by individuals and by groups in diverse situations. Group and individual performance is considered in relation to judgment, learning, social facilitation, problem solving, memory and productivity.

This is a must read publication for anybody interested in social psychology, team work, group processes etc. Also psychology students looking for project ideas and or psychology experiments to replicate will find a goldmine of opportunites here.

This publication forms part of an initiative designed to make important public domain works in psychology freely available.

http://www.all-about-psychology.com/psychology-journal-articles.html

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Categories:Types, Research, Science
Published by: David on Feb 20, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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04/14/2013

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A Survey of Studies Contrasting The Quality of GroupPerformance and Individual Performance (1920 - 1957)
By Irving Lorge Et Al
Originally published in
Psychological Bulletin
(1958, vol. 55, No, 6, 337-372)
 
This is an analysis of studies done in the years 1920-1957 which contrast thequality of performance by individuals and by groups in diverse situations. Anumber of studies are included which add to our understanding of this aspectof human behavior. However, an unpublished review by Lorge et al. (37)prepared in 1953 served as an important source for this presentation. In fact,some of the organization of that report is carried into this study. The existenceof this report is due to a literature search made in connection with researchinto group performance and group process in problem solving.It is important to focus on basic concepts such as "group," "task," and"criterion." These terms have been applied in so many different senses and inso many different situations that clarification and differentiation are necessaryfor the interpretation of the research results.The most ambiguous term seems to be that of "group," which not only isrecognized in a variety of senses by lexicographers, but also is used with awide range of meanings by social psychologists. The lexicographer considers agroup as: (a) an assemblage of persons in physical proximity considered as acollective unity, e.g., a group by aggregation; and (b) a unity of a number of persons classed together because of any kind of common relation, whether of organization or of commitment. The social psychologist recognizes three kindsof groups: (a) an assemblage of persons in a physical environment; (b) anassociation of persons with some form of social, political, or managerialorganization; and (c) a collective unity of members subscribing to a commonsymbol or loyalty. Sapir, in the Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences,distinguishes three classes of groups: (a) persons at a football game or in atrain; (b) organizationally defined, as having some mutuality of purpose, e.g.,employees in a factory or pupils in a classroom; and (c) symbolically defined,as serving some well-recognized function or functions, e.g., family, militarystaff, or executive cabinet.A military staff or an executive cabinet, however, achieves its collective unityas a consequence of having interacted with one another over a considerable
 
period of time, so that they have developed a tradition of working together formutual and common purposes. This viewpoint allows one to think of the groupas continuously emergent—the longer its members work together, the greaterthe possibility of developing a more cohesive and more cooperative team.Group cohesiveness, moreover, may be one of the resultants of interactionamong a team's members that leads to the development of a group or team"tradition." The social psychologist tends to think of the "group" as having a"tradition," i.e., a cooperative association of individuals whose members haveprogressed through the states of coming together in physical proximity, of organizing for common goals, and of accepting commitment for the group'spurposes. The members of a traditioned group will have assayed each other asresources and as personalities, will have established channels ocommunication, and will have achieved mutual reinforcement for the commongoal. The traditioned group, therefore, is a functioning unity—functioning for areal and genuine goal. While the world's work is accomplished by manytraditioned groups or teams or staffs, such traditioned groups have not beenstudied extensively, primarily because of the difficulty of access and theirunwillingness to have others observe their processes.Methodologically, it is important for social psychology to develop anunderstanding of the changing dynamics of the emerging groups. To do this,social psychologists have usually worked with ad hoc groups, i.e., someexperimenter has assembled several individuals to work together mutually andcooperatively on some specific and externally assigned task. An ad hoc group,therefore, may represent one end of a continuum of "group" which extendsfrom the just-assembled ad hoc, to the well established, traditioned group. Adhoc groups, necessarily, will vary in the extent of cohesion that they achieve,as well as in the acceptance of the mutuality of purposes. Each externallydesignated ad hoc group, therefore, in some more or less tentative way, mustorganize, test each other's resources, accept the task goal, muster itsresources to reach that goal, and then accomplish its end. Such experimentalad hoc groups usually cease to exist when the experimenter's purposes havebeen achieved. The research use of the ad hoc groups is exemplified in the

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