Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Using Steiner's (1971) model of group performance, an experiment was performed to investigate the relationship among affiliation-related motives, task demands, group size and group productivity. It was suggested that affiliation-related motives may mediate the effects of group size and task demands on group productivity. That is, when task demands were disjunctive it was hypothesized that approval-oriented as compared to rejection-threatened persons would increase their productivity as group size increased. Under conjunctive task demands it was predicted that increased group size would lead to decreased productivity for rejection-threatened as compared to approval-oriented members.;Affiliation-related motives were measured using Short's (1980) measure of resultant affiliation motivation. Subjects were classfied as high, moderate or low on this measure and the experimental design included two levels of group size (i. e., two, six) and two levels of task demands (i.e., disjunctive, conjunctive). There were an equal number of groups in each cell of the design and groups were homogeneous with respect to motive designation. As task demands was a within-subjects factor, the order in which subjects performed the tasks was counterbalanced.;Results obtained from analysis of variance did not support the predicted three-way interaction among resultant affiliation motivation, group size and task demands. However, results obtained using a measure designed to validate Steiner's model did yield the predicted three-way interaction.;A second study was designed to examine the possible effects of overmotivation on the predicted three-way interaction. Contrary to an overmotivation explanation, results indicated that approval-oriented persons performing under disjunctive task demands did better when approval incentives in the group situation were high rather than low. Interestingly, the three-way interaction appeared to be due to the approval-oriented performing better than the rejection-threatened in the disjunctive task when anticipating future interaction and better in the conjunctive task when future interaction was not anticipated.;Results were interpreted as offering limited support for motivational predictions related to Steiner's model, but suggestive of a number of potentially fruitful avenues of research.



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