Evaluating the quality of learning-team processes in medical education: development and validation of a new measure

Acad Med. 2009 Oct;84(10 Suppl):S124-7. doi: 10.1097/ACM.0b013e3181b38b7a.


Background: Measurement of the quality of team processes in medical education, particularly in classroom-based teaching settings, has been limited by a lack of measurement instruments. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to develop and test an instrument to measure the quality of team interactions.

Method: The authors created 30 items and reduced these to 18 items using factor analysis. They distributed the scale to 309 second-year medical students (RR = 95%) in a course that used teams and measured internal consistency, validity, and differences in scores between teams.

Results: Cronbach's alpha for the scale was 0.97. Team ratings were variable, with a mean score of 95.7 (SD 8.5) out of 108. Team Performance Scale (TPS) scores correlated inversely with the spread of peer evaluation scores (r = -0.38, P = .003). Differences between teams were statistically significant (P < .001, eta = 0.33).

Conclusions: The TPS was short, had evidence of reliability and validity, and exhibited the capacity to distinguish between teams. This instrument can provide a measure of the quality of team interactions. More work is needed to provide further evidence of validity and generalizability.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Education, Medical / methods*
  • Education, Medical / standards*
  • Educational Measurement*
  • Group Processes