This Article 
   
 Share 
   
 Bibliographic References 
   
 Add to: 
 
Digg
Furl
Spurl
Blink
Simpy
Google
Del.icio.us
Y!MyWeb
 
 Search 
   
Social Psychology and Software Teams: Establishing Task-Effective Group Norms
July-Aug. 2012 (vol. 29 no. 4)
pp. 53-58
Alvin Teh, Australian National University
Elisa Baniassad, Australian National University
Dirk van Rooy, Australian National University
Clive Boughton, Australian National University
Web Extra: Erratum
It's a common belief that groups that possess appropriate expertise and work well together will be more likely to successfully complete a project. However, social psychological research shows that getting the right mix of people doesn't guarantee a successful outcome. Group success also relies on group norms, which are derived as much from the group's context as from the people in it. A small, preliminary study illustrates how norm manipulation affected how well groups performed requirements elicitation. Results show that groups performed better on this task when norms emphasized creativity rather than agreeability. Norm manipulation might be a practical way to enhance group performance in software engineering tasks. There is an erratum in this article: in Figure 1, the description in the “Constructive norm condition” box should have read “Priming: list what they had learned in their requirements-analysis course.” The description in the “Critical norm condition” box should have read “Priming: debate and reach consensus on the statement‘Requirements specifications should always reflect design constraints.’”

1. T. DeMarco and T. Lister, Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams, Dorset House, 1999.
2. S. Freudenberg and H. Sharp, "The Top 10 Burning Research Questions from Practitioners," IEEE Software, vol. 27, no. 5, 2010, pp. 8–9.
3. M. Belbin, Team Roles at Work, Butterworth-Heinemann, 1993.
4. S. Nash, Turning Team Performance Inside Out, Davis-Black, 1999.
5. L.F. Capretz, "Personality Types in Software Engineering," Int'l J. Human-Computer Studies, vol. 58, no. 2, 2003, pp. 207–214.
6. I. Ajzen, "The Theory of Planned Behavior," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, vol. 50, no. 2, 1991, pp. 179–211.
7. N. Gorla and Y.W. Lam, "Who Should Work with Whom? Building Effective Software Project Teams," Comm. ACM, vol. 47, no. 6, 2004, pp. 79–82.
8. B.W. Boehm, Software Engineering Economics, Prentice Hall, 1981.
9. W. Scacchi, "Managing Software Engineering Projects: A Social Analysis," IEEE Trans. Software Eng., vol. SE-10, no. 1, 1984, pp. 49–59.
10. S. McDonald and H.M. Edwards, "Who Should Test Whom?," Comm. ACM, vol. 50, no. 1, 2007, pp. 66–71.
11. H. Tajfel et al., "Social Categorization and Intergroup Behaviour," European J. Social Psychology, vol. 1, no. 2, 1977, pp. 149–177.
12. P.B. Paulus et al., "Social and Cognitive Influences in Group Brainstorming: Predicting Production Gains and Losses," European Rev. Social Psychology, vol. 12, no. 1, 2002, pp. 299–325.
13. C.J. Nemeth and J. Wachtler, "Creative Problem Solving as a Result of Majority vs. Minority Influence," European J. Social Psychology, vol. 13, no. 1, 1983, pp. 45–55.
14. T. Postmes, R. Spears, and S. Cihangir, "Quality of Decision Making and Group Norms," J. Personality and Social Psychology, vol. 80, no. 6, 2001, pp. 918–930.
15. B. Efron, "Bootstrap Confidence Intervals for a Class of Parametric Problems," Biometrika, vol. 72, no. 1, 1985, pp. 45–58.

Index Terms:
Psychology,Memory management,Software engineering,Sociology,Collaboration,Software engineering,Design methodology,Teamwork,software engineering,group norms,sociology,teamwork
Citation:
Alvin Teh, Elisa Baniassad, Dirk van Rooy, Clive Boughton, "Social Psychology and Software Teams: Establishing Task-Effective Group Norms," IEEE Software, vol. 29, no. 4, pp. 53-58, July-Aug. 2012, doi:10.1109/MS.2011.157
Usage of this product signifies your acceptance of the Terms of Use.