A long “intellectual” journey
A long “intellectual” journey
The representational function of clinic design: Staff and patient perceptions of teamwork
We offer a worker-centric perspective on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic for the aging workforce. We briefly describe 3 broad characteristics of pandemics—mortality salience, isolation from the workplace, and rising unemployment—in terms of their associated pathways of influence on older workers, and recommendations for future research.
For whom the pandemic tolls: A person-centric analysis of older workers
Job search and employment success: A quantitative review and future research agenda.
The importance of communication among healthcare providers has been long recognized, and many healthcare organizations are implementing team-based care, with emphasis on staff communication. While previous empirical studies in various settings illustrate the role of built environments in user communication, there is a lack of quantified interpersonal spatial metrics to predict interactions. This study investigates how interpersonal spatial metrics at different scales predict staff communication patterns by empirically studying four primary care clinics that provide team-based care. We found that staff members in clinics with higher visual connections among staff members reported more timely and frequent communication. We also found that staff members talked to each other more frequently when their workstations were visually connected. The findings of this study are expected to help designers and facility managers provide well-designed team-based clinic layouts, beyond just shared work spaces for team members, for improved staff communication.
Beyond co-location: Visual connections of staff workstations and staff communication in primary care clinics.
There is conflicting evidence about the capacity for scientific collectives (e.g., research teams, centers) to seed grand innovations. Although scientific challenges often require large numbers of specialized experts to work together, many large organizational groups are susceptible to weak member motivation and poor coordination. We recently concluded a six-year programmatic investigation into this organizational conundrum. Our research considered how best to organize and support collaboration for scientific innovation. Our findings, along with extant research on collaboration and innovation in the organizational sciences, have led us to draw three conclusions for the management of team science. First, we conclude that, rather than single “teams,” many of the collective entities addressing interdisciplinary scientific challenges are more appropriately labeled scientific “Multiteam Systems” (i.e., MTSs). Therefore, referring to all scientific collectives as “scientific teams” can sometimes lead to incorrect conclusions about the best ways to support collaboration. Second, we conclude that processes of interteam leadership and boundary spanning communication, which serve to connect different component teams to one another, are essential to the overall success of scientific MTSs. However, we caution that this second conclusion does not necessarily imply that managers should attempt to create one “big team” characterized by overly integrated subgroups that have lost sight of their unique team identities and subordinate goals. Rather, our third conclusion is that managing MTS collaboration is a balancing act, which involves both the integration of efforts across teams as well as the recognition of component teams’ unique contributions, identities, and subordinate goals. In this chapter, we elaborate these three conclusions and summarize five properties of effective MTSs which are important targets for intervention strategies designed to facilitate multiteam functioning.
Best practices for researchers working in multiteam systems
Workplace emotions and motivation: Toward a unified approach
Backstage staff communication: The effects of different levels of visual exposure to patients
The changing nature of work is having a profound impact on the human experience, particularly among older workers. Two integrative theoretical and empirical frameworks of adult development over the past 3 decades provide new insights into aging and work in the 21st century. The first framework focuses on adult intellect and the second on work motivation. We provide a brief review of these frameworks, discuss the implications for reconsidering adult work lives in the context of interindividual differences, intraindividual change, and external forces, and argue for greater attention to individual differences in knowledge, skills, and motivation. Six broad themes, arising from the convergence of theory, research findings, and emerging patterns of work, are proposed as guides for forging new directions on the intellectual and motivational aspects of adult development in the world of 21st century work.
Work in the 21st century: New directions for aging and adult development
Many studies have discussed unmanned aircraft system (UAS) applications for infrastructure conditions and construction project inspections. However, the industry currently faces significant challenges that hinder the use of this technology. UAS operational procedure is disjointed with regard to the inspection decision-making process. Moreover, training those responsible for UAS operations requires a great deal of time and cost. This study documents the job responsibilities and establishes goals for UAS operators in the construction and infrastructure domains through the use of goal-directed cognitive task analysis (GCTA). GCTA has been proven essential to enhancing training efficiency by revealing necessary areas of augmentation of information requirements related to UAS operation, such as situation awareness and decision criteria. The main goal of this study is to provide a better understanding of the task responsibilities and multilevel goals for operating a UAS. The findings of this study include three key personnel identified, their task domains, goals, and decision criteria, and situation awareness (SA) requirements. In the end, this study also instigates extensive discussion of the conceptual goal-directed decision-making process to support the realization of the goals of UAS applications. This study will help to enhance training performance and align UAS operational procedures and decision-making related to inspection tasks in the construction and infrastructure project environments.
A multi-level goal model for decision-making in UAS visual inspections in construction and infrastructure projects
This paper is an attempt to provide a brief guide to major conceptual and statistical problems that are unique to the study of individual differences in intelligence and various intellectual abilities, in the context of laboratory experimental studies, and to suggest strategies to successfully navigate these problems. Such studies are generally designed so that the goal is to evaluate the relationships between individual differences in basic task performance or related markers on the one hand, and individual differences in intellectual abilities on the other hand. Issues discussed in this paper include: restriction-of-range in talent, method variance and facet theory; speed vs. power; regression to the mean; extreme-groups designs; difference scores; differences in correlations; significant vs. meaningful correlations; factor- pure tests; and criterion variables. A list of representative “do” and “don’t” recommendations is provided to help guide the design and evaluation of laboratory studies.
A primer on assessing intelligence in laboratory studies
Effort as a concept, whether momentary, sustained, or as a function of different task conditions, is of critical importance to resource theories of attention, fatigue/boredom, workplace motivation, career selection, performance, job incentives, and other applied psychology concerns. Various models of motivation suggest that there is an inverted-U-shaped function describing the personal utility of effort, but there are expected to be individual differences in the optimal levels of effort that also are related to specific domain preferences. The current study assessed the disutility of effort for 125 different tasks/activities and also explored individual differences correlates of task preferences, in a sample of 77 undergraduate participants. The participants rated each activity in terms of the amount of compensation they would require to perform the task for a period of 4 h. They also completed paired comparisons for a subset of 24 items, followed by a set of preference judgments. Multidimensional scaling and preference scaling techniques were used to determine individual differences in task preference. Personality, motivation, and interest traits were shown to be substantially related to task preferences. Implications for understanding which individuals are oriented toward or away from tasks with different effort demands are discussed, along with considerations for the dynamics of attentional effort allocations during task performance.
Subjective (dis)utility of effort: Mentally and physically demanding tasks
The ability to foresee, anticipate, and plan for future desired outcomes is crucial for well-being, motivation, and behavior. However, theories in organizational psychology do not incorporate time-related constructs such as Future Time Perspective (FTP), and research on FTP remains disjointed and scattered, with different domains focusing on different aspects of the construct, using different measures, and assessing different antecedents and consequences. In this review and meta-analysis, we aim to clarify the FTP construct, advance its theoretical development, and demonstrate its importance by (a) integrating theory and empirical findings across different domains of research to identify major outcomes and antecedents of FTP, and (b) empirically examining whether and how these variables are moderated by FTP measures and dimensions. Results of a meta-analysis of k = 212 studies reveal significant relationships between FTP and major classes of consequences (i.e., those related to achievement, well-being, health behavior, risk behavior, and retirement planning), and between antecedents and FTP, as well as moderating effects of different FTP measures and dimensions. Highlighting the importance of FTP for organizational psychology theories, our findings demonstrate that FTP predicts these outcomes over and above the big five personality traits and mediates the associations between these personality traits and outcomes.
Future time perspective: A systematic review and meta-analysis
The current study integrates ideas from the successful aging at work paradigm with theory and research on retirement motivation with a sample of midlife workers (N = 397; Mage = 52.34; SD = 5.87) over a 16 month period. We conceptualized successful motivational aging at work as a typology of successful, usual, and unsuccessful motivational aging at work and provide empirical support for the validity of this typology. Motivation to work was defined as retirement age and post-retirement work intentions. We found that promotion-focused trait orientation and person–job fit were predictive of successful aging classification and that work centrality and retirement-related attitudes were related to motivation to work outcomes. Successful aging at work classification, however, did not predict motivation to work outcomes, operationalized as intended retirement age and post-retirement work intentions. Our findings provide support for the dynamic process of motivational aging at work and provide evidence that trait and contextual variables can predict this process. Furthermore, we show that retirement decisions are complex and influenced by an array of work and nonwork attitudes.
Successful motivational aging at work: Antecedents and retirement-related outcomes
Population aging across the globe has focused increasing attention on work motivation and employment goals among older adults. This chapter examines the psychological foundations of work motivation and lifespan theories of motivation as they affect older adults. Measurement issues, motives, and the psychological mechanisms by which older adults address age-related changes in competencies and life circumstances are reviewed, and a distinction is made between determinants of motivation at work (job engagement) and motivational factors and processes that contribute to employment decision-making (to continue to work, to retire, to seek post-retirement work). Organizational strategies to enhance motivation at work and future research directions are discussed.
Work motivation and employment goals in later adulthood
Work has long been recognized as an integral feature of human life. Formost people, identities and aspirations related to employment begin early inlife and are continuously shaped by community, family, schooling, health,job opportunities, and economic realities. In early adulthood, people typicallyfocus on learning new competencies, choosing an occupation, and managingthe school-to-work transition. During midlife, goals and concerns often shiftto improving the work experience, career development, and managing peri-ods of unemployment.
Lifespan perspectives on work motivation
The chapters in this volume reflect one of the most consequential issues of the day—namely, how advances in technology and automation will affect the nature of working and employment in the 21st century. Obviously, this is an ongoing process and there is no definitive answer, but there is growing agreement among scholars and practitioners that recent advances in technology and automation herald the early stage of another “revolution” with respect to the organization, execution, and human experience of work.
Prospects and pitfalls in building the future workforce
This chapter integrates existing theoretical and empirical work, and proposes a model of lifespan changes in individuals’ work lives, their motivational challenges, and how individuals can master these challenges. In the first edition of the Handbook of Competence and Motivation, the chapter “Competence and Motivation in Adulthood and Old Age” addressed competence development and motivation during adulthood generally, and applied the motivational theory of lifespan development to conceptualize the motivational challenges and adaptive responses to age-related changes in competence (Heckhausen, 2005). This new chapter has a similar agenda but focuses more closely on what this means for competence development and motivation in the work domain. Throughout the chapter we pay greater attention to the challenges people encounter at different ages and stages of their careers, and how they master these challenges, than to trait-based individual differences in motivational processes involved in work (e.g., interests in work area, implicit achievement motive; for trait-based research, see Kanfer & Ackerman, 2005).
Competence and motivation at work throughout adulthood. Making the most of changing capacities and opportunities.
Work motivation is a topic of crucial importance to the success of organizations and societies and the well-being of individuals. We organize the work motivation literature over the last century using a meta-framework that clusters theories, findings, and advances in the field according to their primary focus on (a) motives, traits, and motivation orientations (content); (b) features of the job, work role, and broader environment (context); or (c) the mechanisms and processes involved in choice and striving (process). Our integrative review reveals major achievements in the field, including more precise mapping of the psychological inputs and operations involved in motivation and broadened conceptions of the work environment. Cross-cutting trends over the last century include the primacy of goals, the importance of goal striving processes, and a more nuanced conceptualization of work motivation as a dynamic, goal-directed, resource allocation process that unfolds over the related variables of time, experience, and place. Across the field, advances in methodology and measurement have improved the match between theory and research. Ten promising directions for future research are described and field experiments are suggested as a useful means of bridging the research–practice gap.
Motivation Related to Work: A Century of Progress
In this article we selectively review major advances in research on motivation in work and organizational behavior since the founding of Organizational Behavior and Human Performance (now Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes) 50 years ago. Using a goal-based organizing rubric, we highlight the most impactful articles and summarize research progress over time related to understanding the why, where, how, what, and when of motivation during goal choice and goal enactment. We also note macro-level trends in motivation research published in this journal, including the shift away from publishing new, core theories of work motivation in favor of using new approaches published elsewhere to examine key micro-regulatory processes involved in goal decisions and goal pursuit. We conclude with discussion of promising future research directions.
Motivation in organizational behavior: History, advances, and prospects
Despite widespread popular concern about what it means to be over 40 and unemployed, little attention has been paid in the literature to clarifying the role of age within the job seeking experience. Extending theory, we propose mechanisms by which chronological age affects job search and reemployment outcomes after job loss. Through a meta-analysis and examination of 2 supplemental datasets, we examine 5 questions: (a) How strong is the relationship between age and reemployment speed? (b) Does age disadvantage individuals with respect to other reemployment outcomes? (c) Is the relationship between age and reemployment outcomes mediated by job search activities? (d) Are these relationships generalizable? and (e) Are these relationships linear or curvilinear? Our findings provide evidence for a negative relationship between age and reemployment status and speed across job search decade, world region, and unemployment rate, with the strength of the negative relationship becoming stronger over age 50. Job search self-efficacy and job search intensity partially mediate the relationship between age and both reemployment status and speed.
Age and reemployment success after job loss: An integrative model and meta-analysis
This chapter aims to increase our understanding of older workers as job crafters by drawing upon literature on lifespan development and aging at work to propose specific activities and forms Of job crafting relevant for Older workers. The chapter is organized as follows. In the next section, we introduce the concept of job crafting, with an emphasis on the different forms of job crafting. Next, we discuss why job crafting is important for successful aging at work. We then elaborate on important lifespan theories that help to understand how work motives and abilities change with age and which crafting strategies older people use to deal with age-related
losses. Based on this literature and the literature 011 (successful) aging at work, we conclude by proposing specific forms of job crafting that are likely to be most relevant for older workers.
Successful aging at work: The role of job crafting.
This chapter reviews social-cognitive and self-regulatory perspectives on involuntary job loss and subsequent job search. We begin by organizing different social-cognitive and self-regulatory perspectives along the temporal continuum of job loss and job search, and discuss the experience of job loss and its impact on the individual during subsequent job search. Using a motivational/self-regulatory frame, we then review findings related to goal generation and goal striving and outline important considerations for research design, including temporal, social, and measurement issues. Finally, we highlight the successes that have been made in the field thus far, and provide suggestions for promising future research avenues.
Job loss and job search: A social-cognitive and self-regulatory perspective
Work motivation: From processes to purpose
Demographic trends, macroeconomic conditions, and changes in the nature of work have spurred interest in the older worker. Increasing population longevity and reduced birth rates have led policymakers to delay or eliminate fixed-age mandatory retirement as a means of stabilizing workforce size. At the same time, organizations concerned with talent shortages and organizational knowledge transfer have explored the use of exit strategies that extend the employee retirement process over time (e.g., bridge retirement). In theory, such trends are expected to provide support for sustained employability and a longer working life, and there is growing evidence that older individuals are increasingly delaying retirement or reentering the workforce. In practice, however, it is unclear how labor policy changes and organizational practices affect the worker transition process, sustain employability, and promote worker well-being following labor force exit. Although organizations may offer bridge employment options, human resource management practices are often slow to change (see de Lange, Kooij, & van der Heijden, this volume), leading to older worker feelings of disenfranchisement and work dissatisfaction. Organizations have often taken a reactive rather than proactive approach to the development of programs and practices that promote sustained employability (such as older worker socialization, training, and development), mitigate disruptive intergenerational conflict in increasingly age-diverse work teams, and support the hire of qualified older workers. Taken together, these local work experiences may encourage older worker exit from the job and/or the workforce despite broader organizational goals to attract, train, and retain such workers. In summary, while there is wide consensus on the desirability of a longer high-quality working life for many people in developed countries, the development of effective, coordinated strategies for accomplishing such a goal remains largely elusive. This volume seeks to address this issue from a person-centric perspective, namely by examining the impact of work on older worker experiences, goals, attitudes, and behaviors.
Employment Transitions in Late Adulthood
Work motivation refers to the psychological processes and strategies that govern the direction, intensity, and persistence of discretionary actions in the workplace or related to work. This article summarizes key tenets in work motivation theory and practice, historical trends in work motivation research, and modern approaches to work motivation that emphasize the importance of an employee’s work goals and the self‐regulatory processes by which employees strive to accomplish his/her objectives. It also reviews research findings on the differential influence of universal motives (e.g., justice and task enjoyment), individual differences (e.g., achievement motivation and intrinsic rewards), and contextual factors (e.g., task demands and the social environment) on goal setting and self‐regulation in the context of work. Future directions in work motivation research and practice that view employee motivation as a resource are described.
The goal of this volume is setting an agenda for industrial-organizational (I-O) research to address the coming age-related changes to the workforce. Specifically, our primary goal is not to review past research on age at work, but rather to identify what research we should be doing to address age in the workplace. In this chapter, we set the stage for this book, describing the demographic, economic, societal, and technological changes most relevant to the aging workforce; age-related changes that can affect the workplace; and how a use-inspired approach to I-O research can address these issues.
An introduction to facing the challenges of a multi-age workforce
One of the most robust findings in all of industrial-organizational (I-O) psychology is that, when enacted properly, goal setting improves performance. This simple idea is supported by decades of theory and thousands of empirical articles covering diverse work settings, cultures, and outcomes (Locke & Latham, 2002). Despite the validity of this general claim, however, few studies have examined the effects of goal setting in underdeveloped societies. Further, the effects of team-based goals are less well understood than the effects of goals on individuals (DeMatteo, Eby, & Sundstrom, 1998). The present chapter represents the intersection of these ideas by describing how a team-based goals and incentives (TBGI) program was used in remote areas of the Indian state of Bihar to improve the motivation and performance of three types of Frontline Healthcare Workers (FLWs) as they worked to reduce child mortality rates (MDG4) and imporve maternal health (MDG5)
Improving motivation and performance among Frontline Healthcare Workers
Costanza and Finkelstein (2015) are correct to highlight the dangers of using generationally based stereotypes in organizations. Although popular, these stereotypes are related to a stigmatization based on group membership that can be pernicious and discriminatory. Costanza and Finkelstein are also correct in their assessment of the state of the literature on generational effects: theory and research is woefully lacking. Indeed, a recent review of research on generations at work characterized this research as descriptive and neither theoretical nor empirical (Lyons & Kuron, 2014). Yet, as pointed out by Costanza and Finkelstein, the idea of a generational identity is salient and even appealing to many people. Why would this be if it were completely devoid of psychological import? People seem to resonate with the idea that, to some extent at least, they are a product of their generation.
Generations at work: Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater
The goal of the current study was to test a scoring matrix for evaluating and quantifying the difficulty of use of consumer packaging for an older adult population. Scores range from 0 to 100; the lower the score, the less usable the packaging design. Twelve older adults (9 females, 3 males; Mage = 69.5) completed an online survey in which they evaluated 15 everyday packaging types on frequency of use and difficulty of the functional tasks required for use (e.g., pick up and carry, remove seal, open, dispense, close). Blister packaging scored the lowest (M = 71.5) and could benefit the most from redesign. Microwave meal packaging scored the highest (M = 85.8), but this was the only score computed without all participants; only five participants reported using microwave meals. Pull tab cans scored second highest with a mean score of 84.2. In this pilot study, we are laying the groundwork for creating a tool to systematically evaluate and quantify the usability of all packaging types.
Developing a Scoring Matrix to Evaluate the Usability of Consumer Packaging: A Pilot Study
The percentage of older adults using social media has increased substantially in recent years, yet little research has been done to understand the foundations underlying social media technology usage by older adults. Such an understanding is useful for developing intelligent user modeling and personalization techniques specific to this growing community. The current work first compared characteristics of Facebook users to non-users among adults age 51 to 91 and found that older adult Face-book users were significantly more satisfied with their current social roles than non-users. Second, we explored several characteristics of active older adult Facebook users, providing detailed data regarding the ways in which they access social media, the kinds of personal information they typically share, and information about their public versus private communication practices, preferences, and concerns. Finally, we examined specific relationships between older adults’ Facebook communication habits and their attitudes regarding perceived loneliness and social role satisfaction. Controlling for factors such as age, gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status (education and income), and marital status, we found that directed communications (as opposed to broadcast communications or passive consumption of content) was correlated with reduced loneliness as well as increased social role satisfaction among this distinct population.
Social media gerontology: understanding social media usage among older adults
In the near future, workforces will increasingly consist of older workers. At the same time, research has demonstrated that work-related growth motives decrease with age. Although this finding is consistent with life span theories, such as the selection optimization and compensation (SOC) model, we know relatively little about the process variables that bring about this change in work motivation. Therefore, we use a 4-wave study design to examine the mediating role of future time perspective and promotion focus in the negative association between age and work-related growth motives. Consistent with the SOC model, we found that future time perspective was negatively associated with age, which, in turn, was associated with lower promotion focus, lower work-related growth motive strength, and lower motivation to continue working. These findings have important theoretical implications for the literature on aging and work motivation, and practical implications for how to motivate older workers.
Future time perspective and promotion focus as determinants of intraindividual change in work motivation
Research on how to manage and retain older workers is expanding. In this literature, older workers are often viewed as passive recipients or products of their work environment. However, findings in the lifespan literature indicate that people are not passive responders to the aging process, but rather frequently exercise agency in dealing with the biological, psychological, and social changes that occur across the lifespan. In addition, multiple studies demonstrated that employees also exercise agency at work and behave proactively. Job crafting is a specific form of proactive work behavior defined as the self-initiated changes individuals make in the task or relational boundaries of their work. Since job crafting is aimed at improving or restoring person-job fit, it offers older workers a means to continuously adjust their job to intrapersonal changes that are part of the aging process, thereby increasing their ability and motivation to continue working. In this chapter, we apply the concept of job crafting to older worker adjustment. Building upon lifespan theories and the literature on aging at work, we explain why job crafting is important for successful aging at work and we propose specific activities and forms of job crafting relevant for older workers.
Successful Aging at Work: The Role of Job Crafting
Space limitations do not allow me to fully address Ericsson’s comments. Instead, I limit mydiscussion to five of the most salient issues upon which there are significant differences in theevaluation of the existing theory, methodological issues, and data. These relate to Ericsson’suse of the construct “innate talent;” his misapplication of Ackerman’s (1987, 1988) theoryof individual differences during skill acquisition; inadequate attention to selection of testsand consideration of Brunswik Symmetry; oversights and misinterpretations in evaluatingthe results from Masunaga and Horn (2001); and differences in interpretations of several otherstudies. In the final analysis, although there has not been a definitive longitudinal study ofdeliberate practicewith randomselection/assignment and a control group, there is ample evidencefromover 100 years of research supporting the conclusion that abilities are significantly related toindividual differences in the attainment of expert performance.
Facts are stubborn things
Controversies surrounding nature and nurture determinants of expert/elite performance havearisen many times since antiquity, and remain sources of concern in the present day. Extremepositions on this controversy are fundamentally silly — both nature and nurture are necessarydeterminants of expert/elite performance, but neither alone represents a sufficient causalfactor. The central issues surrounding the so-called “talent myth” and the “deliberate practicetheory (also referred to as the “10,000 h rule”) are reviewed. Also provided is a discussion ofthe science of individual differences related to talent, the fundamental characteristics of talentand the role of talent in predicting individual differences in expert/elite performance. Finally, areview of the critical psychometric and statistical considerations for the prediction ofindividual differences in the acquisition of expert/elite performance is presented. Conclusionsfocus on how these various issues fit together, to provide an integrated view of the importanceof talent, but also the limitations of talent identification procedures for discovering whichindividuals will ultimately develop expert/elite levels of performance.
Nonsense, common sense, and science of expert performance: Talent and individual differences
Extant measures that purport to assess overclaiming of an individual’s knowledge provide checklistsof real and bogus items, and typically assess overclaiming on the basis of the number of bogus itemsendorsed by the respondents. Such measures have two salient shortcomings. First, the procedurefor selecting foils (e.g., that may sound familiar to respondents) may influence the likelihood ofendorsement — such as the use of ‘attractive distractors.’ Second, real items endorsed by therespondents are not necessarily ‘true’ indicators of the individual’s knowledge, but confoundknowledge with self-enhancement, because there is no assessment of the individual’s actualknowledge. We present a study of overclaiming of vocabulary knowledge that provides a signaldetection theory assessment, including self-claimed knowledge and an objective test of knowledge.Ability, personality, self-concept and other predictorswere assessed, alongwith gender. Self-claimedvocabulary knowledge was highly correlated with objectively assessed knowledge. In contrast toinvestigations without explicit checks on actual knowledge, current results indicated that higherability individuals evidenced slightly greater overclaiming than lower ability individuals.
Vocabulary overclaiming — A complete approach: Ability, personality, self-concept correlates, and gender differences
Traditional approaches to intelligence have mainly evolved from Spearman’s theory of general intelligence, whichviews intelligence as general and fixed, and from applications of Binet’s approach, which views intelligence amongchildren and adolescents as normally increasing with age. The study of adult intellect and intellectual developmentindicates that neither approach well represents the depth and breadth of skills and knowledge that make up the adultintellectual repertoire. A framework for examining individual differences in intellectual development from adolescencethrough middle adulthood is discussed, along with a series of empirical investigations on the ability and non-ability (e.g.,personality, interests, self-concept) determinants of domain knowledge. Implications for understanding intelligenceduring adulthood and college-major choices are discussed from a perspective that combines intelligence as process,personality, and interests as they determine the development of intelligence as knowledge.
Adolescent and Adult Intellectual Development
We investigated the frequency and duration of distractions and media multitasking among college students engaged in a 3-h solitary study/homework session. Participant distractions were assessed with three different kinds of apparatus with increasing levels of potential intrusiveness: remote surveillance cameras, a head-mounted point-of-view video camera, and a mobile eyetracker. No evidence was obtained to indicate that method of assessment impacted multitasking behaviors. On average, students spent 73 min of the session listening to music while studying. In addition, students engaged with an average of 35 distractions of 6 s or longer over the course of 3 h, with an aggregated mean duration of 25 min. Higher homework task motivation and self-efficacy to concentrate on homework were associated with less frequent and shorter duration multitasking behaviors, while greater negative affect was linked to longer duration multitasking behaviors during the session.We discuss the implications of these data for assessment and for understanding the nature of distractions and media multitasking during solitary studying.
What else do college students “do” while studying? An investigation of multitasking
Cognitive or intellectual investment theories propose that the development of intelligence is partially influenced by personality traits, in particular by so-called investment traits that determine when, where, and how people invest their time and effort in their intellect. This investment, in turn, is thought to contribute to individual differences in cognitive growth and the accumulation of knowledge across the life span. We reviewed the psychological literature and identified 34 trait constructs and corresponding scales that refer to intellectual investment. The dispositional constructs were further classified into 8 related trait categories that span the construct space of intellectual investment. Subsequently, we sought to estimate the association between the identified investment traits and indicators of adult intellect, including measures of crystallized intelligence, academic performance (e.g., grade point average), college entry tests, and acquired knowledge. A meta-analysis of 112 studies with 236 coefficients and an overall sample of 60,097 participants indicated that investment traits were mostly positively associated with adult intellect markers. Meta-analytic coefficients ranged considerably, from 0 to .58, with an average estimate of .30. We concluded that investment traits are overall positively related to adult intellect; the strength of investment–intellect associations differs across trait scales and markers of intellect; and investment traits have a diverse, multifaceted nature. The meta-analysis also identified areas of inquiry that are currently lacking in empirical research. Limitations, implications, and future directions are discussed.
Investment and Intellect: A Review and Meta-Analysis
Background/Context: The past few decades have seen an explosive growth in high-school student participation in the Advanced Placement program® (AP), with nearly two million exams completed in 2011. Traditionally, universities have considered AP enrollment as an indicator for predicting academic success during the admission process. However, AP exam performance may be predictive of future academic success; a related factor in gender differences in major selection and success; and instrumental in predicting STEM persistence.
Purpose: This study focused on determining the influence of patterns of AP exam completion and performance on indicators of post-secondary academic achievement. These patterns were examined in the context of gender differences and for the prediction of grades, STEM persistence and graduation rates. Subjects: The sample consisted of 26,693 students who entered the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) as first-year undergraduate students during the period of 1999-2009.
Research Design: Archival admissions records and college transcripts were obtained for entering first-year (non-transfer) students, to examine patterns of AP exams completed and performance on the exams, as they related to indicators of college academic performance, TCR, 115, 100305 Advanced Placement and College Performance 2 BACKGROUND The Advanced Placement program has been in existence since the 1950s (DiYanni, 2009), but the program has markedly changed over time, especially in the past decade. Although the original goals of the program (to allow students to obtain college-level credit for advanced study during high school) have not changed, the program has expanded in scope, from an initial set of 10 exams in core areas of study (e.g., “English composition, literature, Latin, French, German, Spanish, mathematics, biology, chemistry, and physics” [DiYanni, 2009]) to 33 exams that span the original areas, but also other diverse domains such as Art History, Environmental Science, Human Geography, and Macroeconomics. In addition, there has been an explosive growth in the number of AP exams administered, from about 10,000 in 1960 to a half-million exams in 1990, inflow and outflow STEM majors and non-STEM majors, and attrition/time-to-degree criteria. For predicting college performance, patterns of AP exams were examined in isolation, exams grouped by domain, and instances of multiple examinations completed (e.g., three or more AP exams in the STEM area). These patterns of AP exams were evaluated for predictive validity in conjunction with traditional predictors of post-secondary performance (e.g., high-school GPA and SAT scores). College course enrollment patterns were also examined, in conjunction with AP exam patterns, to determine the associations between AP exam performance and course-taking patterns in post-secondary study.
Data Collection and Analysis: Admissions records were obtained from Georgia Tech, including high-school grade point average information, along with college transcripts, including initial and final major declaration, attrition, and graduation data. Course enrollments were classified by level and by domain. Advanced Placement exam and SAT records were obtained from the College Board, and matched to the Georgia Tech records.
Conclusions/Recommendations: Although student completion of AP exams was positively related to post-secondary grades and graduation rates, this overall pattern masks the relation between AP exam performance and post-secondary success. Students who did not receive credit tended to perform at a level similar to those students who did not complete any AP exams. Increasing numbers of AP-based course credits were associated with higher GPAs at Georgia Tech for the first year and beyond. Students with greater numbers of AP-based course credits tended to complete fewer lower-level courses and a greater number of higher-level courses. Such students graduated at a substantially higher rate and in fewer semesters of study. Average AP exam score was the single best predictor of academic success after high school GPA (HSGPA). The most important predictors of STEM major persistence were receiving credit for AP Calculus and if the student had successfully completed three or more AP exams in the STEM areas. Men had substantially higher rates of these AP exam patterns, compared to women. Given that slightly over half of the AP exams are now completed by high school students prior to their senior year, it is recommended that admissions committees consider use of actual AP exam performance data, in addition to, or instead of AP enrollment data as indicators for predicting post-secondary academic performance.
High School Advanced Placement and Student Performance in College: STEM Majors, Non-STEM Majors, and Gender Differences
Prediction of academic success at postsecondary institutions is an enduring issue for educational psychology. Traditional measures of high-school grade point average and high-stakes entrance examinations are valid predictors, especially of 1st-year college grades, yet a large amount of individual-differences variance remains unaccounted for. Studies of individual trait measures (e.g., personality, self-concept, motivation) have supported the potential for broad predictors of academic success, but integration across these approaches has been challenging. The current study tracks 589 undergraduates from their 1st semester through attrition or graduation (up to 8 years beyond their first semester). Based on an integrative trait-complex approach to assessment of cognitive, affective, and conative traits, patterns of facilitative and impeding roles in predicting academic success were predicted. We report on the validity of these broad trait complexes for predicting academic success (grades and attrition rates) in isolation and in the context of traditional predictors and indicators of domain knowledge (Advanced Placement [AP] exams). We also examine gender differences and trait complex by gender interactions for predicting college success and persistence in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields. Inclusion of trait-complex composite scores and average AP exam scores raised the prediction variance accounted for in college grades to 37%, a marked improvement over traditional prediction measures. Math/Science Self-Concept and Mastery/Organization trait complex profiles were also found to differ between men and women who had initial STEM major intentions but who left STEM for non-STEM majors. Implications for improving selection and identification of students at-risk for attrition are discussed.
Trait Complex, Cognitive Ability, and Domain Knowledge Predictors of Baccalaureate Success, STEM Persistence, and Gender Differences
Intelligence and personality share many common features other than their seminal role in individual differences research. First, they both refer to cognitive, affective, and behavioral differences that are quantifiable through the use of standardized psychometric instruments (Funder, 2001). Second, they are both genetically determined, albeit to different degrees (e.g., Spinath & Johnson, 2011: this volume).
Re-Visiting Intelligence-Personality Associations
The goal of the current study was to test a scoring matrix for evaluating and quantifying the difficulty of use of consumer packaging for an older adult population. Scores range from 0 to 100; the lower the score, the less usable the packaging design. Twelve older adults (9 females, 3 males; M age = 69.5) completed an online survey in which they evaluated 15 everyday packaging types on frequency of use and difficulty of the functional tasks required for use (e.g., pick up and carry, remove seal, open, dispense, close). Blister packaging scored the lowest (M = 71.5) and could benefit the most from redesign. Microwave meal packaging scored the highest (M = 85.8), but this was the only score computed without all participants; only five participants reported using microwave meals. Pull tab cans scored second highest with a mean score of 84.2. In this pilot study, we are laying the groundwork for creating a tool to systematically evaluate and quantify the usability of all packaging types.
Developing a scoring matrix to evaluate the usability of consumer packaging A pilot study.
(from the chapter) Philosophers (e.g., Kant, 1790) and psychologists traditionally separate traits (i.e., relatively stable and transsituational sources of individual differences) into three major categories: affective, cognitive, and conative traits. Affective traits are personality characteristics (such as need for achievement, neuroticism, conscientiousness). Cognitive traits include traditional concepts of broad abilities (such as intelligence), narrower ability constructs (e.g., verbal comprehension, math ability), and even more narrow abilities and skills (reaction time to simple stimuli and typing speed). Conative or volitional traits include motivation and interests. More generally, conation is characterized as will. For much of the twentieth century, with a few notable exceptions, researchers were typically concerned with only a single category of traits, such as personality or abilities, and there were relatively few studies of the interactions between and interrelations among these different categories of traits. In the last two decades, this kind of isolated research has been augmented by investigations of how these different categories of traits relate to one another. In this chapter, I will briefly review some of these streams of integrative research. First, however, a few general considerations and qualifications are needed.
Personality and cognition
Experimental and statistical methods for examining individual differences in dual-task performance and time-sharing ability are reviewed and criticized. Previous data and analysis procedures are generally inadequate to evaluate a time-sharing ability. Errors resulting from unsophisticated use of correlational and factor analytic procedures are described. Four previous studies that concern time-sharing are considered in detail. The nature of task selection, scoring methods, and control of practice and reliability issues are discussed. Based on a reanalysis of available data, a time-sharing ability is not rejected. Simulation, incorporation of theory in planning models, and crucial tests of the hypotheses are proposed as methods for assessing the time-sharing ability.
Deciding the existence of a time-sharing ability: A combined theoretical and methodological approach
A field study was conducted to examine attitudinal and behavioral variables associated with reemployment following job termination. Thirty-five employees were surveyed within two days following termination. Of those surveyed, 23 were contacted one month later regarding employment status. Analyses revealed that reemployed persons were significantly more confident of job search skills and had engaged in a greater number of search behaviors than had individuals who had remained unemployed. No significant differences between the reemployed and still unemployed groups were obtained in affective responses to termination or nonwork-related variables. The findings suggest that reemployment success is related to individual differences in expectations of successful job search. Implications for future research on job loss and reemployment are discussed.
Individual differences in successful job searches following lay-off
The present investigation examined the effects of different types of participation (choice) and role models in goal setting on goal acceptance, goal satisfaction, and performance. It was hypothesized that choice in setting a goal and a strategy to achieve the goal would positively benefit goal acceptance, performance, and goal satisfaction. In addition, it was predicted that a role model would differentially influence an individual’s goal acceptance, goal satisfaction, and performance. One hundred twenty male college students working on a class scheduling task were exposed to either a high- or low-performing role model and given various amounts of choice in the goal-setting process. The results of two-way analyses of variance demonstrated that goal acceptance, goal satisfaction, and performance were highest for individuals given choice over their goal and their strategy to achieve the goal. In addition, the results demonstrated that an individual exposed to a high-performing role model outperformed and had higher goal acceptance and satisfaction than an individual exposed to a low-performing model. The results are discussed as a means for clarifying the effects of different types of choice in the goal-setting process and the importance of role-provided information in influencing an individual’s performance.
The influence of component participation and role models on goal acceptance, goal satisfaction, and performance
A method for investigating measurement equivalence across subpopulations is developed and applied to an instrument frequently used to assess job satisfaction (the Job Descriptive Index; JDI). The method is based on Jöreskog’s simultaneous factor analysis in several populations. Several adaptations are necessary to overcome problems with violations of assumptions that occur with rating scale data. Two studies were conducted to evaluate the measurement equivalence of the JDI across different subpopulations. Investigation of five relatively homogeneous subpopulations within one industry revealed invariant measurement properties for the JDI. In the second study, measurement equivalence of the JDI was examined across health care, retailing, and military samples. Generally small violations of measurement equivalence were found. The results in both studies indicate that mean differences in JDI scores (i.e., differences in job satisfaction across groups) are due to group differences rather than lack of measurement equivalence.
Equivalence of psychological measurement in heterogeneous populations
A conceptual theory for predicting the relations between intellectual abilities and performance during task practice is proposed and evaluated. This macro-theory integrates modern hierarchical theories of intellectual abilities with information-processing theories of automatic and controlled processing (Schneider & Shiffrin, 1977) and performance-resource functions (Norman & Bobrow, 1975). An empirical evaluation of the theory is provided from an experiment with high school and college students. Subjects practiced for several hours on verbal and spatial memory tasks with consistent and varied information-processing manipulations. Derived correlations between ability factors and task performance measures indicate support for the theory and support for linkage of the concepts of intellectual abilities and attentional resources.
Individual differences in information processing: An investigation of intellectual abilities and task performance during practice
A laboratory study was conducted to examine the role of two components of participatory work evaluation procedures on fairness attitudes and work performance. “Opportunity for influential opinion expression” and “knowledge of evaluation criteria” were manipulated in a business simulation exercise. Thirty-eight male and 49 female undergraduates worked under a task evaluation procedure that either did or did not allow them to express their opinions to the evaluator. In addition, subjects either were or were not provided with specific information about the criteria to be used in making the performance evaluation, and they received either a favorable or an unfavorable outcome. Questionnaire responses indicated that influential opinion expression enhanced perceptions of procedural and distributive fairness independently of the outcome of the evaluation. Both knowledge of evaluation criteria and perceptions of evaluation fairness correlated with subsequent task performance. The implications of these findings are discussed with respect to understanding the influence of procedural justice on attitudes and task behavior in organizational settings.
Fairness and participation in evaluation procedures: Effects on task attitudes and performance
The present paper identifies and discusses contemporary problems in the self-regulation, expectancy-value, and goal-setting conceptualizations of task-specific motivation. Three issues are examined in detail: (1) the construct validity of performance measures as a criterion of motivation on cognitive tasks; (2) the influence of objective task characteristics on both the measurement of motivation and the motivation process itself; and (3) the measurement, meaning, and function of the perceived effort-performance relation and probabilistic measures of performance expectations. Within each issue, theoretical advances in information processing and decision making are integrated with previous empirical findings pertaining to performance motivation. Examination of these issues suggests that further emphasis be placed on form analyses of three cognitive mechanisms and on validating a conceptual framework concerning the influence of situational and individual-difference factors on specific cognitive components. A heuristic model, extending previous conceptualizations on the basis of new knowledge in the cognitive domain, is presented as a guide for further integrative research on task-specific motivation.
Task-specific motivation: An integrative approach to issues of measurement, mechanisms, processes, and determinants
In this article, I reexamine the nature of individual differences in novel and practiced performance on skill learning tasks from an information processing framework that incorporates concepts derived from automatic and controlled information processing and attentional resources perspectives. I also use developments in quantitative analysis procedures to approach previous data in a single, unbiased framework for evaluation. Two major sources of data and discussion are reanalyzed and critically evaluated. One source concerns the changes in interindividual between-subjects variability with task practice. The other main source of data and theory pertains to associations between intellectual abilities and task performance during skill acquisition. Early studies of practice and variability yielded mixed results regarding the convergence or divergence of individual differences with practice. Other studies regarding intelligence and skill learning indicated small or trivial correlations between individual differences in intelligence and “gain” scores. More recent studies indicated small correlations between performance measures on skill learning tasks and standard intellectual and cognitive ability measures, as well as increasing amounts of task-specific variance over learning trials. On the basis of this reanalysis and reexamination, these data confirm the proposition that individuals converge on performance as tasks become less dependent on attentional resources with practice. Further, it is determined that when appropriate methodological techniques are used and crucial task characteristics are taken into account, intellectual abilities play a substantial part in determining individual differences in skill learning.
Individual differences in skill learning: An integration of psychometric and information processing perspectives
A field study was conducted to investigate differences between hourly assembly operators who stayed and hourly assembly operators who voluntarily quit their jobs. A total of 80 stayers and 121 leavers were identified from personnel records and were classified into one of three job tenure groups, 2-5 months, 6-12 months, and more than 12 months. Job performance, attendance measures, and biographical variables were used to predict turnover for each job tenure group. Results indicated poorer performance by leavers with 6-12 months tenure compared with stayers. No differences in performance or attendance were obtained between stayers and leavers with between 2-5 months and those with more than 12-months job tenure. Leavers after 6 and before 12 months demonstrated more absenteeism compared with stayers. Implications for the role of absenteeism and constraints on the performance-retention relation are discussed.
Investigating behavioral antecedents of turnover at three job tenure levels
Interactions of stimulus consistency and type of responding were examined during perceptual learning. Subjects performed hybrid memory-visual search tasks over extended consistent and varied mapping practice. Response conditions required subjects to respond to both the presence and absence of a target, only when a target was present or only when a target was not present. After training, the subjects were transferred to a different response condition. The results indicate that: (1) performance on search tasks with stimuli that are variably mapped show no qualitative changes attributable to manipulation of response format; (2) improvement due to consistent mapping (CM) practice is attenuated in the no-only response condition; (3) yes-only CM training attenuates the subjects’ ability to transfer to no-only responding; and (4) yes/no CM training leads to the greatest improvement and transfer when compared with other responding conditions. The practice and transfer data support and extend previous research investigation effects of response set in memory/visual search and help to delineate factors that facilitate or inhibit reduction of load effects in memory and visual search.
Effects of type of responding on memory/visual search: Responding just “yes” or just “no” can lead to inflexible performance
This study examined the role of personal standards, self-efficacy expectations, and social comparison in depression. Nondepressed and dysphoric subjects estimated their own interpersonal standards and efficacy, as well as the standards and efficacy of their peers. Contrary to common theory, dysphoric subjects set lower – not higher – goals than did nondepressed subjects. As expected, nondepressed subjects made more favorable social comparisons than did dysphoric subjects. Nondepressed subjects made more positive judgments for themselves than for their peers, whereas dysphoric subjects made similar judgments for self and other. Results are discussed in terms of their implications for the role of goals and social comparison processes in depression. In particular, it is suggested that, in response to a gap between standards and performance expectations, one might raise expectations, lower standards, or maintain both standards and expectations. The latter two are likely to be associated with depression. Not only are evaluations made in absolute terms, but they are also made by social comparison, especially when evaluation concerns one’s goals. This study suggests that dysphoric people no longer judge that they are superior to their peers, which might hinder them in mobilizing their efforts.
Dysphoric deficits in interpersonal standards, self-efficacy, and social comparison
An integrative theory that links general models of skill acquisition with ability determinants of individual differences in performance is presented. Three major patterns of individual differences during skill acquisition are considered: changes in between-subjects variability, the simplex pattern of trial intercorrelations, and changing ability-performance correlations with practice. In addition to a review of previous theory and data, eight experimental manipulations are used to evaluate the cognitive ability demands associated with different levels of information-processing complexity and consistency. Subjects practiced category word search, spatial figure, and choice reaction time tasks over several hundred trials of task practice. An air traffic controller simulation was used to show generalization to a complex task. Examinations of practice-related between-subjects variance changes and ability-performance correlations are used to demonstrate that an equivalence exists between three broad phases of skill acquisition and three cognitive-intellectual determinants of individual differences.
Determinants of individual differences during skill acquisition: Cognitive abilities and information processing
In a variety of settings, procedures that permit predecision input by those affected by the decision in question have been found to have positive effects on fairness judgments, independent of the favorability of the decision. Two major models of the psychology of procedural justice make contrary predictions about whether repeated negative outcomes attenuate such input effects. If such attenuation occurs, it would lessen the applicability of procedural justice findings to some real-world settings, such as organizations, where procedures often provide repeated negative outcomes. The present laboratory investigation examined the procedural and distributive fairness justments produced by high- and low-input performance evaluation procedures under conditions of repeated negative outcomes. Thirty-five three-person groups of male undergraduates participated in a three-round competition. Groups either were or were not allowed to specify the relative weights to be given to two criteria used in evaluating their performance. All groups received negative outcomes on each of the three rounds. A second experimental factor varied whether or not the group learned after losing the second round that it could not possibly win the third and final round of the competition. Measures of procedural and distributive fairness showed that the high-input procedure led to judgments of greater procedural and distributive fairness across all three rounds. The input-based enhancement of fairness occurred regardless of whether reward was possible. The implications of these findings for theories of procedural justice and for applications of procedural justice to organizational settings are discussed.
Procedural fairness and work group responses to performance evaluation systems
Two central constructs of applied psychology, motivation and cognitive ability, were integrated within an information-processing framework. This theoretical framework simultaneously considers individual differences in cognitive abilities, self-regulatory processes of motivation, and information-processing demands. Evidence for the framework is provided in the context of skill acquisition, in which information-processing and ability demands change as a f function of practice, training paradigm, and timing of goal setting. Three field-based lab experiments were conducted with 1,010 U.S. Air Forces trainees. In Experiment 1 the basic ability-performance parameters of the air traffic controller task and goal-setting effects early in practice were evaluated. In Experiment 2 goal setting later in practice was examined. In Experiment 3 the simultaneous effects of training content, goal setting, and ability-performance interactions were investigated. Results support the theoretical framework and have implications for notions of ability-motivation interactions and design of training and motivation programs.
Motivation and cognitive abilities: An integrative/aptitude-treatment interaction approach to skill acquisition
Recently, there has been increased interest in the role of stable individual differences in so-called personal constructs (e.g. motivation, affect) as determinants of work performance. This study examines: (1) parent-child resemblance in achievement motivation and locus of control, and (2) generational differences in these variables using the WOFO and I-E scales. Results offer convincing evidence for the lack of direct relationship between parent achievement motivation and locus of control on child ratings for these scales. The results are discussed in light of the importance of discovering the antecedents of achievement motivation and locus of control dispositions, especially as they affect behavior in the workplace.
Generational differences and parent-child resemblance in achievement motives and locus of control: A cross-sectional analysis
>Recent discussion by Henry and Hulin (1987) about the implications of stability and change in skilled performance are questioned on several counts. First, the presentation reflects an inadequate review of previous data pertaining to the influences of skill acquisition on ability-performance covariance. Furthermore, the authors made untenable assumptions that equate ability with job sample measures. Their conclusions about universal decline in predictive validity coefficients are inconsistent with both theory and data in the literature. As a result, misleading generalizations were made to other issues in the prediction of individual differences. This article notes deviations from historical literature and outlines the problems of this approach. Discussion of theoretical frameworks for predicting individual differences in skill acquisition and skilled performance is also presented, along with an overview of data in support of these frameworks. The conclusions reached differ from those of Henry and Hulin, lead to different interpretations of past research and practice, and propose very different directions for future research.
Within-task intercorrelations of skilled performance: Implications for predicting individual differences?
>One hundred seventy-nine undergraduate Ss took part in a study of the effects of instrumental and noninstrumental participation on distributive and procedural fairness judgments. In a goal-setting procedure, Ss were allowed voice before the goal was set, after the goal was set, or not at all. Ss received information relevant to the task, irrelevant information, or no information. Both pre- and postdecision voice led to higher fairness judgments than non voice, with predecision voice leading to higher fairness judgments than postdecision voice. Relevant information also increased perceived fairness. Mediation analyses showed that perceptions of control account for some, but not all, of the voice-based enhancement of procedural justice. The results show that both instrumental and noninstrumental concerns are involved in voice effects.
Voice, control, and procedural justice: Instrumental and noninstrumental concerns in fairness judgments
Cognitively-based motivational processes are examined from achievement and goal setting perspective to provide a common basis for: (1) resolution of discontinuities in the empirical literature; (2) analysis of the role of motivational dispositions; and (3) consideration of motivation-cognitive processing interactions during complex skill acquisition. Goal orientation and goal attributes are examined with respect to their detrimental and beneficial influence on performance through effects on goal choice and self-regulatory activities. Theoretically-related differential approaches to motivational processing are found to differ in their utility for understanding motivation among children and adults. The effects of motivational processing on cognitive processes during complex skill acquisition are considered for the purpose of identifying when, how, and for whom specific motivational interventions might be most effective.
Motivation and Individual Differences in Learning: An Integration of Developmental, Differential, and Cognitive Perspectives
Skill specificity, the notion that task performance is based on unique underlying information-processing components at skilled levels of performance, is examined from the perspective of the ability determinants of individual differences in task performance during skill acquisition. The current investigation uses a dynamic ability-skill theoretical perspective to evaluate how individual differences in procedural learning for a complex criterion task relate to learning of procedures for other more basic tasks such as choice and simple reaction time. An experiment with 86 college students was performed using a simulated Air Traffic Controller (ATC) task for assessment of procedural learning, along with practice on several perceptual speed measures and assessment of reference abilities. When subjects are allowed to practice tests of perceptual speed and psychomotor ability, some measures increase in their power to predict skilled performance on the complex ATC criterion task, a direct disconfirmation of the skill-specificity thesis. Discussion is devoted to the use of individual-differences approaches to address general transfer and skill specificity issues.
A correlational analysis of skill specificity: Learning, abilities, and individual differences
The relationship between personality characteristics, daily stressors, and means of coping were studied in a 12-person Soviet-American expedition team consisting of Caucasian and Eskimo men and women. The members scored relatively high on scales measuring well-being, achievement orientation, and traditionalism and scored relatively low on stress reactivity. The use of social support as a coping mechanism was positively related to high stress reactivity, control, and negative emotionality and negatively related to well-being. Negative emotionality was related to ratings of daily intrapersonal stressors. Discussion centered on the function of social support in an extreme, task-focused situation and the relationship of social support coping in this particular type of situation to maladaptive personality characteristics.
Interrelationships of personality, coping, and group processes in a Soviet-American expedition team
The current study was conducted to examine the effects of task complexity and task practice (trials) on the goal-performance relationship. Specific, difficult goal assignments were predicted to enhance performance on complex task only in later task practice. On a simpler task, specific, difficult goal assignments were predicted to enhance performance in early task practice and to disrupt performance in later task practice. The results indicated that goals exerted the predicted effects in the simple task version but had no effect in the complex task version. Possible relationships between amount of task practice and stages of skill acquisition are discussed for tasks differing in complexity. The results are also discussed in terms of cognitive resource demands and self-regulatory processes. Implications for the effectiveness of goals in relation to task complexity and task trials are also discussed.
Goal-performance relations: The effects of initial task complexity and task practice
Relations between personality and intelligence were investigated in the context of the distinction between intelligence as typical engagement and intelligence as maximal engagement. The traditional approach to investigating the association between intelligence as maximal performance and personality was reviewed, and suggestions were made, including the suggestion that intelligence as typical engagement and related to typical intellectual performance were operationalized. Relations found were modest, yet several personality scales differentially related to fluid and crystallized classes of intelligence. Relations between the personality constructs surrounding typical intellectual engagement and the broad personality domain are investigated.
Personality-intelligence relations: Assessing typical intellectual engagement
Substantial controversy exists about ability determinants of individual differences in performance during and subsequent to skill acquisition. This investigation addresses the controversy. An information-processing examination of ability-performance relations during complex task acquisition is described. Included are ability testing (including general, reasoning, spatial, perceptual speed, and perceptual/psychomotor abilities) and skill acquisition over practice on the terminal radar approach controller simulation. Results validate and extend Ackerman’s (1988) theory of cognitive ability determinants of individual differences in skill acquisition. Benefits of ability component and task component analyses over global analyses of ability-skill relations are demonstrated. Implications are discussed for selection instruments to predict air traffic controller success and for other tasks with inconsistent information-processing demands.
Predicting individual differences in complex skill acquisition: Dynamics of ability determinants
An example of combining laboratory-and field-based study to develop a selection battery for field implementation s described. The procedure provides advantages in comparison with sole use of construct validity data, and fewer field demands for cross-validation. Two experiments were conducted that converge on development of a test battery for selection of air traffic controllers (ATCs). The laboratory study (N=112) used an ATC simulator (terminal radar approach control, or TRACON) for initial development and evaluation of the selection battery. The field study of 206 Federal Aviation Administration ATC trainees provided cross-validation data as a precursor to implementation of the battery. Implications for developing ability-based and self efficacy-based selection measures for complex job performance are discussed, as are general issues for new election research and application.
Integrating laboratory and field study for improving selection: Development of a battery for predicting air traffic controller success
A 12-person Soviet-American Bering Bridge expedition team was studied over the 61 days of their trek by dogsled and cross-country ski from the Chukotka region of Siberia, across the Bering Straits, to Alaska. The group was instructed to complete a daily effectiveness measure each evening that assessed the perception of the emotional climate of the group and relationships to task effectiveness. Members participated in a structured interview at the end of the expedition. Perceived fairness of daily task assignments was negatively related to number of disagreements and how friendly other team members were. The planned stops in villages along the way to promote international harmony enhanced the international objectives of the expedition but had a negative impact on group cohesiveness. The ability of the group to meet its objectives despite frequent episodes promoting a negative emotional climate was discussed.
Group processes and task effectiveness in a Soviet-American expedition team
Hypotheses regarding the influence of goal assignments on performance of a novel, complex task under varying conditions of practice were derived from a cognitive resource allocation model. Goals and type of practice interacted in their effects on two key performance measures. In the massed-practice conditions, trainees assigned specific, difficult goals tended to perform poorer than trainees in the control (do your best goal) condition. In the spaced-practice conditions, goal trainees performed marginally better than control trainees. Self-report measures of goal commitment, and on-task, off-task, and affective thoughts during breaks and task performance provide additional evidence for the independent and interactive effects of goals and practice conditions on motivation and performance. Results provide further support for the resource allocation framework. Implications for research and practice are discussed.
Goal Setting, Conditions of practice, and task performance: A resource allocation perspective
T. Rocklin (1994) examined the relations between our (M. Goff & P.L. Ackerman, 1992) measure of Typical Intellectual Engagement (TIE) and a personality test measure of Openness. We examine Rocklin’s arguments in the context of three themes: philosophical issues, TIE and Openness from a facet perspective, and the bandwidth-fidelity dilemma. Although Rocklin raised important issues about these constructs, we demonstrate that measures of TIE and Openness, although significantly related, are theoretically and empirically distinguishable.
Typical intellectual engagement and personality: Reply to Rocklin (1994)
The way that cognitive abilities, learning task characteristics, and motivational and volitional processes combine to explain individual differences in performance and learning was investigated. A substitution task was studied over practice, and it was discovered that students used strategy in which students persisted in scanning items. Five experiments investigated strategy differences and the ability and motivational correlates of task performance. First, ability correlates of performance and strategy use were demonstrated. Next, reducing task difficulty increased use of the learning strategy. With periodic memory tests, effective reliance on the learning strategy was increased, and task performance correlations with reasoning ability were lowered. Finally, a combination of self-focus and goal-setting interventions increased both general performance levels and use of the learning strategy. Results are discussed in terms of the goal of developing a more comprehensive understanding of learner differences.
Determinants of learning and performance in an associative memory/substitution task: Task constraints, individual differences, and volition
Integration of multiple perspectives on the determinants of individual differences in skill acquisition is provided by examination of a wide array of predictors: ability (spatial, verbal, mathematical, and perceptual speed), personality (neuroticism, extroversion, openness, conscientiousness, and agreeableness), vocational interests (realistic and investigative), self-estimates of ability, self-concept, motivational skills, and task-specific self-efficacy. Ninety-three trainees were studied over the course of 15 hr (across 2 weeks) of skill acquisition practice on a complex, air traffic controller simulation task (Terminal Radar Approach Controller; TRACON; Wesson International; Austin, TX). Across task practice, measures of self-efficacy, and negative and positive motivational thought occurrence were collected to examine prediction of later performance and communality with pretask measures. Results demonstrate independent and interactive influences of ability tests and self-report measures in predicting training task performance. Implications for the selection process are discusses in terms of communalities observed in the predictor space.
Cognitive and noncognitive determinants and consequences of complex skill acquisition
An individual-differences approach to social competence is presented. People generated a large number of operational indicators of social competence. The dimensions that underlie those indicators were then determined. Seven interpretable dimensions of social competence were identified, each with a distinct pattern of correlations with personality and cognitive ability variables. Major personality dimensions are closely related to social competence, whereas cognitive ability (as operationalized by academic performance indicators) is less related to social competence. A profile approach to social competence is proposed because (a) social competence is a compound trait, all of whose dimensions do not covary, and (b) some social competence dimensions may be curvilinear such that, after an ideal point has been reached, higher standing on the dimension may hinder rather than enhance socially competent performance.
To "act wisely in human relations:" Exploring the dimensions of social competence. Personality and Individual Differences
The authors describe an approach to adult intellect on the basis of content, unlike the traditional approach, which is mostly based on process. Thirty-two academic knowledge scales were rated by 202 college students, who also completed ability, vocational interest, and personality scales. Analyses of knowledge clusters and individual scales were used to evaluate commonality across ability constructs (verbal and spatial ability), vocational interests (realistic, investigative, and artistic), and personality (typical intellectual engagement and openness). The results support knowledge differentiation across fluid and crystallized abilities, show a pattern of positive correlations of arts and humanities knowledge with typical intellectual engagement and openness, and show correlations between math and physical sciences knowledge and realistic and investigative interests. Implications for the study of adult intelligence are discussed.
Self-report knowledge: At the crossroads of ability, interest, and personality
This article has 2 goals: first, to present and test a hierarchical representation of personality that jointly incorporates both situational and personality (e.g., Big Five) factors into a trait conception, and second, to explicate the dimensions along which situations differ in their effect on responses, providing the conceptual and empirical groundwork for the development of a joint taxonomy of traits and situations. A study of the effects of situational differences on trait self-reports indicated that conscientiousness and agreeableness can be represented hierarchically, with lower levels jointly constrained by both personality content and situational breadth. This representation establishes a methodological framework allowing for the explanation of the ways that situations interact with personality to affect responses. Implications of this representation for personality theory and prediction to and from personality inventories are discussed.
Towards an interactionist taxonomy of personality and situations: An integrative situational-dispositional representation of personality traits
We report a series of investigations that focus on the nature of motivational skills and self-regulation for learning as traits, in contrast to consideration of self-regulation as resulting from particular interventions. In this context, we consider how self-report measures of motivational and self-regulation skills relate to other traits, such as ability, personality, interests, academic self-concept, self-ratings of abilities. In addition, we discuss how such trait measures are associated with task-specific self efficacy across tasks of varying complexity-from simple and information processing to complex air traffic controller tasks. Self-regulatory and motivational skills show substantial overlap with other trait measures, as do measures of learning strategies. Motivational and domain-specific self-concepts, along with trait anxiety, appear to be strongly related to task-specific self-efficacy.
Motivational skills & self-regulation for learning: A trait perspective
The issues of skill specificity and transfer of training were examined from an aptitude-treatment interaction approach. The current investigations extended A.M. Sullivan’s (1964) approach by using a procedural transfer task and training conditions that differed in the amount of training task practiced and the degree of training task similarity to the transfer task. Tow experiments were conducted with 232 college students. Experiment 1 examined the effects of a length-of -training manipulation on reasoning ability and transfer task performance relationships, and on the amount of transfer. Experiment 2 evaluated the effects of 2 training tasks that differed in terms of similarity to the transfer task on ability-performance relationships and the amount of transfer. Results suggest that Sullivan’s approach partially generalizes to the acquisition of procedural knowledge.
An aptitude-treatment interaction approach to transfer within training
The development of adult intelligence assessment early in this century as an upward extension of the Binet-Simon approach to child intelligence assessment is briefly reviewed. Problems with the use of IQ measures for adults are described, along with a discussion of related conceptualizations of adult intellectual performance. Prior intelligence theories that considered adult intelligence (Cattell, 1943, 1971/1987; Hebb, 1941, 1942, 1949; Vernon, 1950) are reviewed. Based on extensions of prior theory and new analyses of personality-ability and interest-ability relations, a developmental theory of adult intelligence is proposed, called PPIK. The PPIK theory of adult intellectual development integrates intelligence-as-process, personality, interests, and intelligence-as-knowledge. Data from the study of knowledge structures are examined in the context of the theory, and in relation to measures of content abilities (spatial and verbal abilities). New directions for the future of research on adult intellect are discussed in light of an approach that integrates personality, interests, process, and knowledge.
A theory of adult intellectual development: process, personality, interests, and knowledge
Evaluation of overlap among correlational construct families provides a basis for cross-fertilization in each of the four separate individual-differences domains. This article provides some new insights on Thorndike’s claim that superiority in one trait implies superiority in other traits. Definitions and methodological differences among correlational domains of inquiry are reviewed from modern investigations of personality, self-concept, interests, and intelligence. Sources of overlap between personality and other trait families are discussed and four trait complexes are reviewed: social, clerical/conventional, science/math, and intellectual/cultural. Implications of the trait-complex approach and challenges to integrative research approaches to applied problems are presented.
Personality, self-concept, interests, and intelligence: Which construct doesn’t fit?
The authors review the development of the modern paradigm for intelligence assessment and application and consider the differentiation between intelligence-as-maximal performance and intelligent-as-typical performance. They review theories of intelligence, personality, and interest as a means to establish potential overlap. Consideration of intelligence-as-typical performance provides a basis for evaluation of intelligence – personality and intelligence – interest relations. Evaluation of relations among personality constructs, vocational interests, and intellectual abilities provides evidence for communality across the domains of personality of J. L. Holland’s (1959) model of vocational interests. The authors provide an extensive meta-analysis of personality – intellectual ability correlations, and a review of interests – intellectual ability associations. They identify 4 trait complexes: social, clerical/conventional, science/math, and intellectual/cultural.
Intelligence, personality, and interests: Evidence for overlapping traits
This study investigated 3 broad classes of individual-differences variables (job-search motives, competencies, and constraints) as predictors of job -search intensity among unemployed job seekers. Also assessed was the relationship between job-search intensity and reemployment success in a longitudinal context. Results show significant relationships between the predictors employment commitment, financial hardship, job-search self-efficacy, and motivation control and the outcome job-search intensity. Motivation control was highlighted as the only lagged predictor of job-search intensity over time for those who were continuously unemployed. Job-search intensity predicted Time 2 reemployment status for the sample as a whole, but not reemployment quality for those who found jobs over the study’s duration.
Unemployed individuals: Motives, job-search competencies, and job-search constraints as predictors of job seeking and reemployment.
Twenty academic knowledge tests were developed to locate domain knowledge within a nomological network of traits. Spatial, numerical, and verbal aptitude measures and personality and interest measures were administered to 141 undergraduates. Domain knowledge factored along curricular lines; a general knowledge factor accounted for about half of knowledge variance. Domain knowledge exhibited positive relations with general intelligence (g), verbal abilities after g was removed, Opennes, Typical Intellectual engagement, and specific vocational interests. Spatial and numerical abilities were unrelated to knowledge beyond g. Extraversion related negatively to all knowledge domains. Results provide broad support for R.B. Cattell’s (1971/1987) crystallized intelligence as something more than verbal abilities and specific support for P.L. Ackerman’s (1996) intelligence-as-process, personality, interests, and intelligence-as-knowledge theory of adult intelligence.
Assessing individual differences in knowledge: Knowledge structures and traits
Some intelligence theorists (e.g., R. B. Cattell, 1943; D. O. Hebb, 1942) have suggested that knowledge is one aspect of human intelligence that is well preserved or increases during adult development. Very little is known about knowledge structures across different domains or about how individual differences in knowledge relate to other traits. Twenty academic and technology-oriented tests were administered to 135 middle-aged adults. In comparison with younger college students, the middle-aged adults knew more about nearly all of the various knowledge domains. Knowledge was partly predicted by general intelligence, by crystallized abilities, and by personality, interest, and self-concept. Implications of this work are discussed in the context of a developmental theory that focuses on the acquisition and maintenance of intelligence-as-knowledge, as well as the role of knowledge for predicting the vocational and avocational task performance of adults.
The locus of adult intelligence: Knowledge, abilities, and nonability traits
Assessment of psychomotor abilities for prediction of human performance is briefly reviewed. Reasons for the abandonment of psychomotor testing for section applications are described. We review innovation in touch-sensitive computer monitors as a methodology for relatively low-cost, highly flexible test development, validation, and application of standard psychomotor tests. The development and evaluation of 5 psychomotor test types are described including discrete response tests (choice-simple reaction time [RT], serial RT, and tapping) and continuous-response tests (maze tracing and mirror tracing). Two empirical studies of the new psychomotor tests are presented, with a broad array of perceptual speed and cognitive abilities providing evidence for construct validity. In addition, some of the psychomotor tests are validated against a real-time simulation criterion (the Kanfer-Ackerman Air Traffic Controller Task). We argue that these new innovations provide a means toward revisiting psychomotor testing to augment employee section batteries.
Psychomotor abilities via touch-panel testing: Measurement innovations, construct, and criterion validity
This study examined predictors and outcomes of networking intensity (i.e., individual actions directed toward contacting friends, acquaintances, and referrals to get information, leads, or advice on getting a job) during the job searches of a sample of unemployed individuals. The study used a Big Five framework, in which extraversion and conscientiousness were associated with both higher levels of networking intensity and higher use of other traditional job-search methods. Networking comfort (a procedure-specific constellation of evaluative beliefs depicting attitudes toward using networking as a job-search method) was positively related to networking intensity above and beyond the effects of personality. Networking intensity did not provide incremental prediction of unemployment insurance exhaustion., reemployment or reemployment speed, or job satisfaction when intensity of use of other job-search methods was considered.
Predictors and outcomes of networking intensity among unemployed job seeker
Empirical evidence on the conceptual and construct validity of the motivational trait taxonomy proposed by Kanfer and Heggestad is presented. 228 adults completed a shortened form of the Motivational Trait Questionnaire (MTQ), along with a battery of personality and ability measures. Relationships of the MTQ with personality measures show evidence of convergent and discriminant validity for trait constructs of Personal Mastery, Competitive Excellence, and Motivation Related to Anxiety. In addition, MTQ scale scores were generally unrelated to composite measures of fluid and crystallized intelligence. Examination of age differences showed a pattern of developmental decline in the achievement trait complex, but not the anxiety complex.
Individual differences in work motivation: Further explorations of a trait framework
The prediction of individual differences in skilled performance has been a source of substantial theory and empirical research over the past 100 years. Developments in the statistical evaluation of individual differences data, and progress in the investigation of a wide range of human abilities (such as general, perceptual speed, and psychomotor abilities) have contributed to a better understanding of the role of ability in the acquisition of skills. This article presents a reappraisal of the theoretical and empirical approaches to questions regarding the ability determinants of skilled performance, describes progress that has been made, and discusses enduring problems and future challenges.
A reappraisal of the ability determinants of individual differences in skilled performance
An enduring controversy in intelligence theory and assessment, the argument that middle-aged adults are, on average, less intelligent than young adults, is addressed in this study. A sample of 228 educated adults between ages 21 and 62 years was given an array of tests that focused on a broad assessment of intelligence-as-knowledge, traditional estimates of fluid intelligence (Gf) and crystallized intelligence (Gc), personality, and interests. The results indicate that middle-aged adults are more knowledgeable in many domains, compared with your adults. A coherent pattern of ability, personality, and interest relations is found. The results are consistent with a developmental perspective of intelligence that includes both traditional ability and non-ability determinants of intelligence during adulthood. A reassessment of the nature of intelligence in adulthood is provided, in the context of lifelong learning and investment model, called PPIK, for intelligence-as-Process, Personality, Interests, and intelligence-as-Knowledge (Ackerman, 1996).
Domain-specific knowledge as the "dark matter" of adult intelligence: gf/gc, personality and interest correlates
The development and initial evaluation of a measure of motivational traits, the Motivational Trait Questionnaire (MTQ), is described. Based upon theorizing by Kanfer and Heggestad (1997), development of the MTQ began by identifying and defining five motivational traits. Item pools were generated for each of the proposed traits, and initial facets were developed through a content-sorting procedure. Two studies were conducted to evaluate the MTQ at the item, facet, and scale levels. In Study 1, the facet scales were refined based on item-level. The factor structure of the MTQ facets was similar to that found in Study 1. An extension analysis from the three trait factors to extant measures of achievement, test and trait anxiety, and personality provided construct validity evidence for the MTQ scales. Results from these studies support the multidimensional structure of motivational traits proposed by Kanfer and Heggestad.
Individual differences in trait motivation: Development of the Motivational Trait Questionnaire (MTQ)
Examined gender differences in the overlooked context of individual adoption and sustained usage of technology in the workplace using the theory of planned behavior. User reactions and technology usage behavior were studied over a 5-mo period among 355 workers being introduced to a new software technology application. When compared to women’s decisions, the decisions of men were more strongly influenced by their attitude toward using the new technology. In contrast, women were more strongly influenced by subjective norm and perceived behavioral control. Sustained technology usage behavior was driven by early usage behavior, thus fortifying the lasting influence of gender-based early evaluations of the new technology. These findings were robust across income, organization position, education, and computer self-efficacy levels.
A longitudinal field investigation of gender differences in individual technology adoption decision making processes
An attempt is made to reconcile two historically important tools for the assessment of intelligence and the prediction of academic achievement with extant theories of verbal-crystallized-knowledge aspects of adult abilities. A study of 167 adults (aged 18-69 yrs) reasserts the importance of individual differences in completion test and cloze test performance in accounting for both measures of crystallized intelligence (Gc) and four scales of knowledge (biology, US history, US literature, and technology). The completion tests were found to account for all of the variance in Gc and knowledge that the cloze tests accounted for, and resulted in incremental predictive validity for both domains. In addition, completion and cloze tests were found to have a suppressor effect on the relationship between Gc and Age. We note that C. Spearman’s (1927) assertion, namely that the completion test had higher correlations with intelligence than any other measure. Our results suggest that abstract reasoning may be far less useful in predicting learning and performance than the completion test is.
Explorations of crystallized intelligence: Completion tests, cloze tests and knowledge
The authors describe a series of experiments that explore 3 major ability determinants of individual differences in skill acquisition in the context of prior theory (e.g., P. L. Ackerman, 1988) and subsequent empirical and theoretical research. Experiment 1 assessed the predictability of individual differences in asymptotic skill levels on the Kanfer-Ackerman Air Traffic Controller (ATC) task. Experiment 2 provided an exploration of the construct space underlying perceptual-speed abilities. Experiment 3 concerned an evaluation of theoretical predictions for individual differences in performance over skill development in a complex air traffic control simulation task (TRACON) and the ATC task, with an extensive battery of general and perceptual-speed measures, along with a newly developed PC-based suite of psychomotor ability measures. Evidence addressing the predictability of individual differences in performance at early, intermediate, and asymptotic levels of practice is presented.
Cognitive, perceptual speed, and psychomotor determinants of individual differences during skill acquisition
A motivational, self-regulatory conceptualization of job search was used to organize and investigate the relationships between personality, expectancies, self, social, motive, and biographical variables and individual differences in job search behavior and employment outcomes. Meta-analytic results indicated that all antecedent variables, except optimism, were significantly related to job search behavior, with estimated population correlations ranging from -.15 to .46. As expected, job search behavior was significantly and positively related to employment success, although the size of the relationships was consistently smaller than those obtained for job search. Moderator analyses showed significant differences in the size of variable relationships for type of job search measure (effort vs. intensity) and sample type (job loser vs. employed job seeker vs. new entrant).
Job search and employment: A personality-motivational analysis and meta-analytic review
This study expanded the scope of knowledge typically included in intellectual assessment to incorporate domains of current-events knowledge from the 1930s to the 1990s across the areas of art/humanities, politics/economics, popular culture, and nature/science/technology. Results indicated that age of participants was significantly and positively related to knowledge about current events. Moreover, fluid intelligence was a less effective predictor of knowledge levels than was crystallized intelligence. Personality (i.e., Openness to Experience) and self-concept were also positively related to current-events knowledge. The results are consistent with an investment theory of adult intellect, which views development as an ongoing outcome of the combined influences of intelligence-as-process, personality, and interests, leading to intelligence-as-knowledge
Current-events knowledge in adults: An investigation of age, intelligence, and nonability determinants
The authors investigated the abilities, self-concept, personality, interest, motivational traits, and other determinants of knowledge across physical sciences/technology, biology/psychology, humanities, and civics domains. Tests and self-report measures were administered to 320 university freshmen. Crystallized intelligence was a better predictor than was fluid intelligence for most knowledge domains. Gender differences favoring men were found for most knowledge domains. Accounting for intelligence reduced the gender influence in predicting knowledge differences. Inclusion of nonability predictors further reduced the variance accounted for by gender. Analysis of Advanced Placement test scores largely supported the results of the knowledge tests. Results are consistent with theoretical predictions that development of intellect as knowledge results from investment of cognitive resources, which, in turn, is affected by a small set of trait complexes.
Determinants of individual differences and gender differences in knowledge
Comments on an article by G. Latham concerning the reciprocal transfer of learning between journals and practice. Specifically, the author addresses issues related to the theory–practice balance in journal publications from 3 perspectives. First, the author considers the question of balance in terms of evaluating a single study, and discusses an alternative framework for making a decision about how the evaluate the potential “utility” of a study to the field. Second, the broader question of balance in a journal’s content is examined. It is suggested that concerns about balance at this level, such as whether a journal is too “theory-heavy” are less determined by the journal than by the state of the field. Also, balance in terms of the personal and situational characteristics that appear to foster valued work at the basic–applied interface is investigated.
I/O Psychology: Working at the basic-applied psychology interface
It has become fashionable to equate constructs of working memory (WM) and general intelligence (g). Few investigations have provided direct evidence that WM and g measures yield similar ordering of individuals. Correlational investigations have yielded mixed results. The authors assess the construct space for WM and g and demonstrate that WM shares substantial variance with perceptual speed (PS) constructs. Thirty-six ability tests representing verbal, numerical, spatial, and PS abilities; the Raven Advanced Progressive Matrices; and 7 WM tests were administered to 135 adults. A nomological representation for WM is provided through a series of cognitive and PS ability models. Construct overlap between PS and WM is further investigated with attention to complexity, processing differences, and practice effects.
Individual differences in working memory within a nomological network of cognitive and perceptual speed abilities
Previous research on basic information processing tasks has suggested that there may be a dissociation between the underlying process determinants of task performance and associations with ability measures. The current study investigates this dissociation in the context of a complex skill learning task — an air traffic control simulation called TRACON. A battery of spatial, numerical, and perceptual speed ability tests was administered, along with extensive task practice. After practice, manipulations of task requirements and system consistency were introduced. Ability correlations with performance revealed a dissociation between some manipulations that have effects on performance means and the corresponding correlations with reference abilities. Implications for integrating experimental and differential approaches to explaining performance, and possible avenues for improved selection measures are discussed.
Ability and task constraint determinants of complex task performance
Motivation in the work context can be defined as an individual’s degree of willingness to exert and maintain an effort towards organizational goals. Health sector performance is critically dependent on worker motivation, with service quality, efficiency, and equity, all directly mediated by workers’ willingness to apply themselves to their tasks. Resource availability and worker competence are essential but not sufficient to ensure desired worker performance. While financial incentives may be important determinants of worker motivation, they alone cannot and have not resolved all worker motivation problems. Worker motivation is a complex process and crosses many disciplinary boundaries, including economics, psychology, organizational development, human resource management, and sociology. This paper discusses the many layers of influences upon health worker motivation: the internal individual-level determinants, determinants that operate at organizational (work context) level, and determinants stemming from interactions with the broader societal culture. Worker motivation will be affected by health sector reforms which potentially affect organizational culture, reporting structures, human resource management, channels of accountability, types of interactions with clients and communities, etc. The conceptual model described in this paper clarifies ways in which worker motivation is influenced and how health sector reform can positively affect worker motivation. Among others, health sector policy makers can better facilitate goal congruence (between workers and the organizations they work for) and improved worker motivation by considering the following in their design and implementation of health sector reforms: addressing multiple channels for worker motivation, recognizing the importance of communication and leadership for reforms, identifying organizational and cultural values that might facilitate or impede implementation of reforms, and understanding that reforms may have differential impacts on various cadres of health workers.