Why an Expert Team Is More than a Team of Experts: A Social-Cognitive Conceptualization of Team Coordination and Communication in Sport

in Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology
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The cognitive properties and processes of teams have not been considered in sport psychology research. These properties and processes extend beyond the sum of the cognitive properties and processes of the constituent members of the team to include factors unique to teams, such as team coordination and communication. A social-cognitive conceptual framework for the study of team coordination and communication is offered, based on research on social cognition and from industrial and organizational psychology. This is followed by a discussion of coordination and communication in expert teams. In addition, an overview of the type of methods that could be used to measure aspects of team coordination and communication in sport is provided. The framework and methods afford hypothesis generation for empirical research on coordination and communication in sport teams, a means to begin examining these constructs in sport, and a theoretical base with which to reconcile the resultant data.

D.W. Eccles is with the Learning Systems Institute, Florida State Univ., University Center, Suite C4600, Tallahassee, FL 32306-2540. G. Tenenbaum is with the Dept. of Educational Psychology and Learning Systems, 307 Stone Bldg., Florida State U., Tallahassee, FL 32306.

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