feedback, scenario based team training, simulation based team training, team training, goal orientation


Scenario based training (SBT) allows organizations to train the competencies necessary for effective performance in an environment that replicates critical aspects of the transfer or operational setting. One of the most salient training features that can be delivered during SBT is feedback. Task feedback may be provided to trainees either during a training scenario (immediately following actions) or between training scenarios (after action review). However, little is known regarding the effects of immediate versus delayed feedback given to teams. Prior research on training individuals suggests that immediate feedback improves performance as assessed immediately after training (acquisition performance), however delayed feedback improves performance after time has passed (retention performance). Moreover, several individual training studies have found that trainee goal orientation moderates the influence of instructional features such as goal difficulty and content organization. I hypothesized that team member goal orientation would also moderate the influence of feedback timing on team performance. Three facets of goal orientation were assessed. Learning goal orientation refers to the extent to which individuals strive towards the mastery of skills for the sake of continuous improvement. Prove goal orientation refers to the extent to which individuals strive to demonstrate their own competence to others. Finally, avoid goal orientation refers to the extent to which individuals seek to avoid demonstrating their incompetence to others. Participants were 160 undergraduate psychology students assigned to 80 two-person teams. These teams were trained and tested using a simulated military task called the Forward Observer Personal Computer-based Simulator. Teams received 36 minutes of training prior to performing a skill acquisition test on day one of the experiment. One week later teams returned to perform a skill retention test. Teams were randomly assigned to receive immediate feedback during their team training scenarios or delayed feedback following each training scenario. Results indicated that the timing of feedback had no impact on acquisition performance. As predicted, however, teams that had received delayed feedback outperformed those that had received immediate feedback on the retention test. Moreover, the positive impact of delayed feedback on retention performance was greatest for teams that scored higher on a measure of state learning goal orientation on the day of their training. This interaction was mediated by the team's perception of the instrumentality of the feedback provided to them. Theoretical and practical implications, as well as, limitations and directions for future research are discussed.


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Graduation Date



Smith-Jentsch, Kimberly


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


College of Sciences



Degree Program









Release Date

September 2009

Length of Campus-only Access


Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)

Included in

Psychology Commons