PEER RATING STABILITY IN CHANGING GROUPS.
Technical research note,
ARMY PERSONNEL RESEARCH OFFICE WASHINGTON D C
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The purpose of the project was to evaluate peer ratings as predictors of NCO potential and to study the relative effectiveness of various methods of obtaining peer ratings. Operational peer ratings obtained in four companies at the end of four weeks of Basic Combat Training were compared with peer ratings at the end of the 8th week. For two companies, squads within a company were rearranged so that the second rating was made by different raters than the first. In the two remaining companies, squads remained intact. Cadre ratings were obtained for comparison with peer ratings, as were also later peer and cadre ratings for those men in available AIT assignments. Peer ratings of leadership potential in groups of 12 to 16 men had substantial reliability over 4 to 16 weeks. The reliability held whether individuals were in stable groups and rated by the same men a second time, or in changing groups and rated by different men. Peer ratings were more reliable than cadre ratings obtained under comparable circumstances. Since a man rated high as a leader in one group is likely to be equally acceptable as a leader in a different group, management can use peer ratings as dependable indexes in assigning men to positions of leadership regardless of the composition of the group. Author