Undergraduate Honors Theses

Date of Award





Dr. Natalie Allen


This research examines team faultlines and their potential impact on team performance. Faultlines are defined as hypothetical dividing lines that split a group or team into two or more subgroups based on one or more individual attributes (e.g., gender and ethnicity). Investigations explored the possibility that team cohesion (i.e., team members’ attraction and commitment to their team) would moderate the relationship between faultlines and team performance. Participants (n = 867) completed The Task and Social Cohesion Questionnaire during one of two academic years (2013-14; 2014-15). Faultline strength was calculated for each team using two approaches, Thatcher’s Fau and Meyer’s Average Silhouette. It was hypothesized that faultline strength would be significantly negatively correlated to team performance, and team cohesion would be significantly positively correlated to team performance. Pearson correlational analyses revealed that both faultline measures (Thatcher’s Fau (r = -.06); Meyer’s ASW (r = .002)), social cohesion (r = .06) and task cohesion (r = .10) were not significantly correlated to team performance. It was also hypothesized that cohesion would moderate the relation between faultline strength and team performance, such that faultlines would have a less negative effect at high levels of cohesion. Moderated hierarchical multiple regression analyses revealed that all interaction terms were nonsignificant, although the interaction term between Thatcher’s Fau and task cohesion was trending towards significance (ΔR2 = .016).