Trade-offs in a team tracking task as a function of performance feedback


Team members often have to make decisions about which aspects of their tasks they should emphasize. One of the factors that may determine these decisions is the type of feedback. In this study, the influence of the type of concurrent performance feedback on team performance in a pursuit tracking task was investigated. Eighteen dyads performed a reciprocally interdependent team tracking task. Subjects' goal was to optimize team performance under three different conditions: One team member never received feedback, while the other received either team, individual, or no feedback. The tracking error was measured. The results from this study largely confirmed the findings from previous research which had indicated a feedback by team member interaction: When provided with individual feedback, team members seemed to emphasize the perceived individual aspects of their task at the expense of the team effort. Under team feedback, the reverse occurred. In support of these findings, the current study found a significant gap in performance between the two team members under individual feedback conditions. The team member receiving individual feedback performed significantly better than their interdependent cohort. Yet, when subjects received either team or no feedback, their performance was worse than that of their team member, even if the difference failed to reach statistical significance. The results suggest that feedback can adequately focus subjects' attention towards specific aspects of their task.

Publication Date


Publication Title

Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society



Number of Pages


Document Type

Article; Proceedings Paper



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Socpus ID

0028750565 (Scopus)

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