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J Appl Psychol. 2003 Aug;88(4):587-604.

Measuring transactive memory systems in the field: scale development and validation.

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  • 1Department of Management, University of Texas at Austin, 78712-0210, USA.


This study describes the development and validity testing of a field measure of transactive memory systems. Transactive memory systems are especially important for teams designed to leverage members' expertise, but field research has lagged because there are no adequate measures of the construct. The author developed and tested a 15-item scale in a laboratory sample of 124 teams, a field sample of 64 Master of Business Administration consulting teams, and a field sample of 27 teams from technology companies. Results from the present study demonstrate that the scale is internally consistent, related to alternative measures and hypothesized causes and effects, and unrelated to theoretically distinct constructs, providing evidence of convergent, criterion-related, and discriminant validity. Suggestions for improving the scale, future validity testing, and possible boundary conditions are discussed.

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