Accession Number:

ADA252640

Title:

Early Decisions and Concurrent Option Comparison in Problem Solving Groups

Descriptive Note:

Final rept. Jul 1989-Jul 1991

Corporate Author:

ARMY RESEARCH INST FOR THE BEHAVIORAL AND SOCIAL SCIENCES ALEXANDRIA VA

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1992-05-01

Pagination or Media Count:

23.0

Abstract:

For this project, groups of Army captains were tested in a problem solving exercise called VARWARS. Normally in VARWARS exercises, groups use a naturalistic problem solving process characterized by sequential elaboration and development of possible solutions, rather than a concurrent comparison of options. In the first experiment, an attempt was made to induce some groups to use a concurrent option comparison method. It proved possible to increase the likelihood of groups using the method however, this did not result in an improvement in solution quality. In the second experiment, groups were induced to use a different method, called Early Decision, in which the groups were compelled to select a single candidate solution much sooner than they normally would. The Early Decision process resulted in a significant and substantial improvement in the quality of solutions, compared with both naturalistic and concurrent comparison methods.

Subject Categories:

  • Psychology

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE