June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
26.1495.1 - 26.1495.10
Team CARE model: Assessing team dynamics in first-year engineering student teamsBackground: Educators in engineering disciplines place a high value on teamwork skills;however, few instructional hours and resources are devoted to developing these skills at theundergraduate level. To address this issue, a partnership between psychology and engineeringhas resulted in an in-depth examination of factors that lead to better teamwork. Initially, weanalyzed and disseminated results pertaining to overall levels of student teamwork dynamics.Recently we took these results one step further by developing a theoretical model based on datawe collected and a through review of the literature. Specifically, the Team CARE model wasdeveloped using data collected, over the span of three years, from first-year engineering studentsenrolled in a design and communications course at a large North American university. TeamCARE is a diagnostic tool that provides teams with specific information on the “health” oreffectiveness of their team. We describe the model, theoretical background, how to access thetool, and provide an example of a team diagnostic report.The model: Team CARE model brings together several key teamwork theories to provide ainclusive assessment of a team’s current state of health. Team CARE stands for: Communicate,Adapt, Relate, and Educate. The first dimension, Communicate, encompasses role clarity andcommunication norms. The second dimension, Adapt, entails monitoring team goals, beingflexible to changing demands, and providing other members with back-up when needed. Thethird factor, Relate, assesses conflict (i.e., task, relationship, and process) and team trust. Thefourth component, Educate, measures team learning and task-related information sharing.The tool: The Team CARE diagnostic tool is an online platform that presents students withsurvey items regarding an array of dynamics occurring in their team. First, an instructor inputshis or her class list and identifies the students’ team membership and email address. Second,students are automatically emailed participation invites and are provided with a link to thesurvey. Each student completes the online assessment which takes approximately 15 minutes.Third, once all team members have completed the online assessment a diagnostic report isautomatically generated, by aggregating team member responses, and is emailed to the team.Individual responses are anonymous and confidential as only aggregated data appears in thereport. The CARE report provides the team with valuable information by presenting scores oneach key component of teamwork.We describe each component of the Team CARE model and provide an overview of how toaccess the Team CARE assessment tool at no charge through our platform. Additionally, we willpresent a sample feedback report which is automatically generated and delivered to studentsparticipating in the team health assessment. We believe that the Team CARE diagnostic tool hasenormous potential to impact the teamwork capabilities of engineering student teams. Byintroducing students to the Team CARE model we provide them with a basis for understandingtheir team’s ability to communicate, adapt, relate to one another, and learn together.
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