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Project Title:  Understanding and Preventing Crew Member Task Entrainment Reduce
Images: icon  Fiscal Year: FY 2020 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Start Date: 06/01/2015  
End Date: 12/31/2022  
Task Last Updated: 03/18/2020 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   LePine, Jeffrey  Ph.D. / Arizona State University 
Address:  Department of Management 
PO Box 874006 
Tempe , AZ 85287-4006 
Email: jeff.lepine@asu.edu 
Phone: 480-965-8652  
Congressional District:
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Arizona State University 
Joint Agency:  
Comments:  
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
Wellman, Edward  Ph.D. Arizona State University 
Newton, Daniel  Ph.D. University of Iowa 
Key Personnel Changes / Previous PI: March 2020 report: Daniel Newton, Ph.D., is now CoInvestigator on the project.
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNX15AK77G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor: Williams, Thomas  
Center Contact: 281-483-8773 
thomas.j.williams-1@nasa.gov 
Solicitation: 2013-14 HERO NNJ13ZSA002N-ILSRA. International Life Sciences Research Announcement 
Grant/Contract No.: NNX15AK77G 
Project Type: FLIGHT,GROUND 
Flight Program: ISS 
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:  
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:  
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:  
No. of PhD Degrees:
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Team:Risk of Performance and Behavioral Health Decrements Due to Inadequate Cooperation, Coordination, Communication, and Psychosocial Adaptation within a Team (IRP Rev F)
(2) Train:Risk of Performance Errors Due to Training Deficiencies
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SHFE-TRAIN-01:We do not know which validated objective measures of operator proficiency and of training effectiveness should be used for future long-duration exploration missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How can we develop objective training measures to determine operator proficiency during and after ground training?)
(2) SHFE-TRAIN-02:We need to identify effective methods and tools that can be used to train for long-duration, long-distance space missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How do we develop training methods and tools for space medical application if time is minimal?)
(3) Team Gap 01:We need to understand the key threats, indicators, and life cycle of the team for autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
(4) Team Gap 03:We need to identify a set of countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
Flight Assignment/Project Notes: NOTE: End date changed to 12/31/2022 per HRP and "in progress" information in NSSC (Ed., 3/20/2020)

NOTE: Extended to 5/15/2020 per NSSC information (Ed., 6/28/19)

NOTE: Extended to 5/15/2019 per NSSC information (Ed., 3/6/18)

NOTE: Element change to Human Factors & Behavioral Performance; previously Behavioral Health & Performance (Ed., 1/18/17)

Task Description: The proposal responds to the request for research exploring Team Task Switching in Astronaut Crews on the International Space Station (ISS). We propose ground- and flight-based experiments to understand and mitigate the performance deficits caused by crew members switching between independent and interdependent tasks. Drawing on our own research, as well as that conducted by other scholars, we explain how crew member entrainment is produced by deep levels of cognitive, physical, and affective engagement or immersion in tasks, which make it difficult for members to disengage from those tasks – even after they have switched to a different task. We hypothesize that, as a result of this immersion/engagement, entrainment causes subsequent task engagement and effectiveness to suffer. We further hypothesize that the strength of this effect influenced by perceptions of task completion.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Scholars have conducted research on task transitions (Monsell, 2003) and considered what makes workers effective when transitioning. However, we do not fully understand how individuals’ psychological connections to tasks fluctuate when they transition between tasks as well as what the impact is on subsequent task effectiveness. A more robust understanding of the psychological connections individuals maintain with tasks—after having previously transitioned and anticipating an upcoming transition—are critical to improving and maintaining the effectiveness of crew members as well as individuals on Earth.

Monsell, S. (2003). Task switching. Trends in cognitive sciences, 7(3), 134-140. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1364-6613(03)00028-7

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2020 
Task Progress: Aims of Proposal: The proposed research addresses the performance effects of entrainment during an operational space flight context. We explore what can be done to mitigate the negative effects of entrainment and improve individual and team capabilities to engage in effective task switching. We seek to address the following: Team Gap 1 (need to understand threats to teams during long duration missions), Team Gap 3 (need to identify countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration missions), and Team Gap 8 (need to identify psychosocial and psychological factors, measures, and combinations thereof that can be used to compose effective crews for autonomous, long-duration missions).

We consider the effects of crew member entrainment (Ancona & Chong, 1996) between crew member engagement and effectiveness. Entrainment may be especially problematic as astronauts shift between tasks that may vary significantly in their physical, cognitive, and emotional demands (Smith-Jentsch, 2015). Features of specific tasks that individuals transition between can foster attention residue, or the inability to decouple one’s mental energies from previous tasks (Leroy, 2009), which in turn, hinders effectiveness in subsequent tasks. The difficulty in transitioning one’s attention also creates problems with transitions between tasks, and in turn, hinders effectiveness in subsequent tasks.

In previous years, we have viewed entrainment as backward looking—tasks that crew members have already transitioned away from that may linger with them (Newton, LePine, Kim, Wellman, & Bush, 2020--see Bibliography section for reference). Although our ongoing work replicates previous findings in different habitats or contexts, we now consider future entrainment effects. That is, it is possible that crew members may struggle to transition effectively between tasks when they anticipate or are preoccupied by an upcoming future task. In 2019, we conducted ground experiments within HERA (Human Explorations Research Analog) and NEK (Nazemnyy eksperimental'nyy kompleks, Russia’s IBMP Ground-based Experimental Complex) that isolate this effect. Although we do not directly test this hypothesis aboard the ISS, our post-flight interviews have begun to explore this phenomenon. Our collective findings enhance our understanding of the psychological and interpersonal pathways through which entrainment operates (both backward and forward looking), and individual and task attributes that can mitigate its effects. This could lead to the development of strategies to improve individual and team effectiveness in a variety of organizational contexts including exploration missions.

HERA Campaigns: In 2019, we continued to test and find support for our hypotheses in HERA missions. As with previous years, we sought to seamlessly integrate our study into the natural workflow of HERA crew members. That is, we utilized existing maintenance and payload tasks which were scheduled to occur during the mission. Working with SMEs (subject matter experts), we selected a finalized series of “task-transition-task” episodes to serve as the focal point of the study. After the completion of the second task, crew members completed a brief survey about their engagement and attention residue in past tasks and their anticipatory engagement in upcoming tasks—and whether this anticipation distracted or motivated them on the initial task in a “task-transition-task” sequence.

ISS Campaigns: Three crew members returned from orbit in 2019. While aboard the ISS, crew members reflected every two weeks on a recent transition between two tasks. They reported their level of engagement in the tasks, how seamlessly they transitioned, and what generally went well and what could have gone better. Following their return to Earth, we conducted 30-45 minute qualitative interviews with them, where we asked them about their experience transitioning aboard the ISS. These interviews gave insight into the task transition phenomenon.

NEK Campaign: Based upon feedback from other crews, we examined the challenges in anticipating upcoming tasks in the NEK environment. We found that anticipating an upcoming task reduced engagement in a present task if the upcoming task was complex in nature. These effects appear to be stronger at the beginning of the mission prior to routinization. We plan to pursue this phenomenon in subsequent NEK missions in 2020 and 2021.

Our aggregate findings reveal a better understanding of the transitional process that influences multifaceted work. Consistent with our previous findings, task engagement has positive and negative consequences on subsequent tasks. On the positive side, task engagement activates positive affect and thereby engagement in subsequent tasks, which increases crew member effectiveness. On the negative side, we find that task engagement lingers after individuals move to subsequent tasks, negatively impacting subsequent task engagement and effectiveness. Completing a task is critical in reducing the negative cognitive effects that can linger. When tasks are incomplete, the negative pathway remains active and reduces subsequent engagement and effectiveness. Moreover, preliminary evidence from NEK suggests that upcoming tasks impair current task engagement when the upcoming task is perceived to be complex. Our ongoing research aims at helping NASA leverage the benefits of engaging work during task transitions, while limiting the associated risks of attention residue and anticipatory engagement.

References

Ancona, D., & Chong, C. L. (1996). Entrainment: Pace, cycle, and rhythm in organizational behavior. Research in Organizational Behavior, 18, 251-284.

Smith-Jentsch, K. A. (2015). On shifting from autonomous to interdependent work: What we know and what we need to learn (pp. 1-31). Houston, TX: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

Leroy, S. (2009). Why is it so hard to do my work? The challenge of attention residue when switching between work tasks. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 109(2), 168-181.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 03/20/2020)  Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Newton DW, LePine JA, Kim JK, Wellman N, Bush JT. "Taking engagement to task: The nature and functioning of task engagement across transitions." J Appl Psychol. 2020 Jan;105(1):1-18. Epub 2019 Jun 17. https://doi.org/10.1037/apl0000428 ; PubMed PMID: 31204829 , Jan-2020
Project Title:  Understanding and Preventing Crew Member Task Entrainment Reduce
Images: icon  Fiscal Year: FY 2019 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Start Date: 06/01/2015  
End Date: 05/15/2020  
Task Last Updated: 03/13/2019 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   LePine, Jeffrey  Ph.D. / Arizona State University 
Address:  Department of Management 
PO Box 874006 
Tempe , AZ 85287-4006 
Email: jeff.lepine@asu.edu 
Phone: 480-965-8652  
Congressional District:
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Arizona State University 
Joint Agency:  
Comments:  
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
Wellman, Edward  Ph.D. Arizona State University 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNX15AK77G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor: Williams, Thomas  
Center Contact: 281-483-8773 
thomas.j.williams-1@nasa.gov 
Solicitation: 2013-14 HERO NNJ13ZSA002N-ILSRA. International Life Sciences Research Announcement 
Grant/Contract No.: NNX15AK77G 
Project Type: FLIGHT,GROUND 
Flight Program: ISS 
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:  
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:  
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:  
No. of PhD Degrees:
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Team:Risk of Performance and Behavioral Health Decrements Due to Inadequate Cooperation, Coordination, Communication, and Psychosocial Adaptation within a Team (IRP Rev F)
(2) Train:Risk of Performance Errors Due to Training Deficiencies
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SHFE-TRAIN-01:We do not know which validated objective measures of operator proficiency and of training effectiveness should be used for future long-duration exploration missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How can we develop objective training measures to determine operator proficiency during and after ground training?)
(2) SHFE-TRAIN-02:We need to identify effective methods and tools that can be used to train for long-duration, long-distance space missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How do we develop training methods and tools for space medical application if time is minimal?)
(3) Team Gap 01:We need to understand the key threats, indicators, and life cycle of the team for autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
(4) Team Gap 03:We need to identify a set of countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
Flight Assignment/Project Notes: NOTE: Extended to 5/15/2020 per NSSC information (Ed., 6/28/19)

NOTE: Extended to 5/15/2019 per NSSC information (Ed., 3/6/18)

NOTE: Element change to Human Factors & Behavioral Performance; previously Behavioral Health & Performance (Ed., 1/18/17)

Task Description: The proposal responds to the request for research exploring Team Task Switching in Astronaut Crews on the International Space Station (ISS). We propose ground- and flight-based experiments to understand and mitigate the performance deficits caused by crew members switching between independent and interdependent tasks. Drawing on our own research, as well as that conducted by other scholars, we explain how crew member entrainment is produced by deep levels of cognitive, physical, and affective engagement or immersion in tasks, which make it difficult for members to disengage from those tasks – even after they have switched to a different task. We hypothesize that, as a result of this immersion/engagement, entrainment causes subsequent task engagement and effectiveness to suffer. We further hypothesize that the strength of this effect influenced by perceptions of task completion.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Scholars have conducted research on task transitions (Monsell, 2003) and considered what makes workers effective when transitioning. However, we do not fully understand how individuals’ psychological connections to tasks fluctuate when they transition between those tasks as well as the impact on subsequent task effectiveness. A more robust understanding of the psychological connections individuals maintain with tasks—after having previously transitioned and anticipating an upcoming transition—are critical to improving and maintaining the effectiveness of crew members as well as individuals on Earth.

Monsell, S. (2003). Task switching. Trends in cognitive sciences, 7(3), 134-140. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1364-6613(03)00028-7

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2019 
Task Progress: Aims of Proposal: The proposed research addresses the performance effects of entrainment during an operational space flight context. We explore what can be done to mitigate the negative effects of entrainment and improve individual and team capabilities to engage in effective task switching. We seek to address the following: Team Gap 1 (need to understand threats to teams during long duration missions), Team Gap 3 (need to identify countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration missions), and Team Gap 8 (need to identify psychosocial and psychological factors, measures, and combinations thereof that can be used to compose effective crews for autonomous, long-duration missions).

We consider how crew member entrainment (Ancona & Chong, 1996) is influenced by the linkage between employee engagement and effectiveness. Entrainment may be especially problematic as astronauts shift between tasks that may vary significantly in their physical, cognitive, and emotional demands (Smith-Jentsch, 2015). Features of specific tasks that individuals transition between can foster attention residue, or the inability to decouple one’s mental energies from previous tasks (Leroy, 2009), which in turn, hinders effectiveness in subsequent tasks. The difficulty in transitioning one’s attention also creates problems with transitions between tasks, and in turn, hinders effectiveness in subsequent tasks.

In previous years, we have viewed entrainment as backward looking—tasks that crew members have already transitioned away from that may linger with them. Although our ongoing work replicates our previous findings in different habitats or contexts, we have now begun to consider future entrainment effects. That is, it is possible that crew members may struggle to transition effectively between tasks when they anticipate or are preoccupied by another task. We are currently conducting ground experiments within HERA (Human Explorations Research Analog) and NEK (Nazemnyy eksperimental'nyy kompleks, Russia’s IBMP Ground-based Experimental Complex) that isolate this effect. Although we do not directly test this hypothesis aboard the ISS, our post-flight interviews have begun to explore this phenomenon. The collective findings from these examinations will enhance our understanding of the psychological and interpersonal pathways through which entrainment operates (both backward and forward looking), and individual and task attributes that can mitigate its effects. This could lead to the development of strategies to improve individual and team effectiveness in a variety of organizational contexts including exploration missions.

HERA Campaigns: In 2018, we continued to test and find support for our hypotheses in HERA missions. As with previous years, we sought to seamlessly integrate our study into the natural workflow of HERA non-astronaut crew members. In other words, we did not introduce any new tasks, but utilized the existing maintenance and other payload tasks which were scheduled to occur during the mission. With this information in mind, we were able to select a finalized series of “task-transition-task” episodes to serve as the focal point of the study. After the completion of the second task, crew members completed a brief survey about their engagement and attention residue in the tasks. Individuals in HERA mission control recorded notes about crew member task effectiveness. In upcoming HERA tasks, as mentioned, we will survey individuals about the extent to which they anticipated a second task, and whether this anticipation distracted or motivated them on the initial task in a “task-transition-task” sequence.

ISS Campaigns: Two crew members flew and returned from orbit in 2018. Due to unforeseen circumstances, one crew member had his flight delayed until 2019. The crew members who participated in our study periodically (i.e., every two weeks) reflected on a recent transition between two tasks. They reported on their level of engagement in the tasks, how seamlessly they transitioned, and what generally went well and what could have gone better. Following their return to Earth, we conducted 30-45 minute qualitative interviews with them, where we asked them about their experience transitioning aboard the ISS. These interviews, as alluded to above, indicated the importance of forward looking challenges associated with entrainment that we plan to examine in upcoming sister campaigns.

NEK Campaign: We have been preparing to participate in NEK. Based upon feedback from other crews, we plan to examine the challenges in anticipating upcoming tasks and the potential negative effects these bring to present tasks. We have been identifying tasks with NASA crew members that again allow us to seamlessly integrate our study into a crew’s natural work flow.

Our findings thus far reveal a better understanding of the transitional process that influences effectiveness in multifaceted work. Importantly, we find that task one engagement has positive and negative consequences on subsequent tasks. On the positive side, task one engagement activates positive affect and thereby engagement in subsequent tasks, which increases crew member effectiveness. On the negative side, we find that task one engagement lingers after individuals move on to subsequent tasks, negatively impacting subsequent task engagement and effectiveness. Completing a task is critical in reducing the negative cognitive effects that can linger. When tasks are incomplete, the negative pathway remains active and reduces subsequent engagement and effectiveness. However, when previous tasks are completed, then the negative effects are short-circuited. Our ongoing research aims at helping NASA leverage the benefits of engaging work during task transitions, while limiting the associated risks of attention residue.

References

Ancona, D., & Chong, C. L. (1996). Entrainment: Pace, cycle, and rhythm in organizational behavior. Research in Organizational Behavior, 18, 251-284.

Smith-Jentsch, K. A. (2015). On shifting from autonomous to interdependent work: What we know and what we need to learn (pp. 1-31). Houston, TX: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

Leroy, S. (2009). Why is it so hard to do my work? The challenge of attention residue when switching between work tasks. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 109(2), 168-181.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 03/20/2020)  Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Bush JT, LePine JA, Newton DW. "Teams in transition: An integrative review and synthesis of research on team task transitions and propositions for future research." Hum Resour Manage Rev. 2018 Dec;28(4):423-33. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.hrmr.2017.06.005 , Dec-2018
Project Title:  Understanding and Preventing Crew Member Task Entrainment Reduce
Images: icon  Fiscal Year: FY 2018 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Start Date: 06/01/2015  
End Date: 05/15/2019  
Task Last Updated: 03/03/2018 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   LePine, Jeffrey  Ph.D. / Arizona State University 
Address:  Department of Management 
PO Box 874006 
Tempe , AZ 85287-4006 
Email: jeff.lepine@asu.edu 
Phone: 480-965-8652  
Congressional District:
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Arizona State University 
Joint Agency:  
Comments:  
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
Wellman, Edward  Ph.D. Arizona State University 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNX15AK77G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor: Williams, Thomas  
Center Contact: 281-483-8773 
thomas.j.williams-1@nasa.gov 
Solicitation: 2013-14 HERO NNJ13ZSA002N-ILSRA. International Life Sciences Research Announcement 
Grant/Contract No.: NNX15AK77G 
Project Type: FLIGHT,GROUND 
Flight Program: ISS 
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:  
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:  
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:  
No. of PhD Degrees:  
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Team:Risk of Performance and Behavioral Health Decrements Due to Inadequate Cooperation, Coordination, Communication, and Psychosocial Adaptation within a Team (IRP Rev F)
(2) Train:Risk of Performance Errors Due to Training Deficiencies
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SHFE-TRAIN-01:We do not know which validated objective measures of operator proficiency and of training effectiveness should be used for future long-duration exploration missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How can we develop objective training measures to determine operator proficiency during and after ground training?)
(2) SHFE-TRAIN-02:We need to identify effective methods and tools that can be used to train for long-duration, long-distance space missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How do we develop training methods and tools for space medical application if time is minimal?)
(3) Team Gap 01:We need to understand the key threats, indicators, and life cycle of the team for autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
(4) Team Gap 03:We need to identify a set of countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
Flight Assignment/Project Notes: NOTE: Extended to 5/15/2019 per NSSC information (Ed., 3/6/18)

NOTE: Element change to Human Factors & Behavioral Performance; previously Behavioral Health & Performance (Ed., 1/18/17)

Task Description: The proposal responds to the request for research exploring Team Task Switching in Astronaut Crews on the International Space Station (ISS). We propose ground- and flight-based experiments to understand and mitigate the performance deficits caused by crew members switching between independent and interdependent tasks. Drawing on our own research, as well as that conducted by other scholars, we explain how crew member entrainment is produced by deep levels of cognitive, physical, and affective engagement or immersion in tasks, which make it difficult for members to disengage from those tasks – even after they have switched to a different task. We hypothesize that, as a result of this immersion/engagement, entrainment causes subsequent task engagement and effectiveness to suffer. We further hypothesize that the strength of this effect influenced by perceptions of task closure.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Scholars have conducted research on task transitions and highly variable work (Louis & Sutton, 1991; Monsell, 2003), considering what generally makes an effective transition or worker. Unfortunately, we do not fully understand how individuals’ psychological connections to the tasks they perform fluctuate when they transition between those tasks as well as the impact on subsequent task effectiveness. A more robust understanding of the psychological connections individuals maintain with tasks—after having previously transitioned—are critical to improving and maintaining the effectiveness of crew members as well as individuals on Earth.

Leroy, S. (2009). Why is it so hard to do my work? The challenge of attention residue when switching between work tasks. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 109(2), 168-181. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.obhdp.2009.04.002

Louis, M. R., & Sutton, R. I. (1991). Switching cognitive gears: From habits of mind to active thinking. Human Relations, 44(1), 55-76. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/001872679104400104

Monsell, S. (2003). Task switching. Trends in cognitive sciences, 7(3), 134-140. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1364-6613(03)00028-7

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2018 
Task Progress: Aims of Proposal: The proposed research program begins to address the performance effects of entrainment to a particular work style and then switching to another style during an operational space flight context. Specifically, we explore what can be done to mitigate the negative effects of entrainment and improve individual and team capabilities to engage in effective task switching. In addressing these questions, the proposed studies also contribute to answering the following identified Integrated Research Plan (IRP) gaps: Team Gap 1 (need to understand threats to teams during long duration missions), Team Gap 3 (need to identify countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration missions), and Team Gap 8 (need to identify psychosocial and psychological factors, measures, and combinations thereof that can be used to compose effective crews for autonomous, long-duration missions).

We consider how crew member entrainment (Ancona & Chong, 1996) is influenced by the linkage between employee engagement and effectiveness in the context of jobs that vary in regard to required physical, cognitive, and emotional energies. The problem of entrainment may be especially problematic as astronauts shift between individual and crew tasks that may vary significantly in their physical, cognitive, and emotional demands (Smith-Jentsch, 2015). Although individual, job, and organizational attributes foster a base of job engagement (Kahn, 1990), features of the specific tasks that individuals transition between can also foster attention residue, or the inability to decouple one’s energies from previous tasks (Leroy, 2009), which in turn, can hinder effectiveness in subsequent tasks. In other words, lingering engagement in prior tasks after a transition has occurred makes it difficult for individuals to mentally disengage and disconnect from their prior task and focus their full attention on the new task. The difficulty in transitioning also creates problems with transitions between tasks, and in turn, hinders effectiveness in subsequent tasks.

We are currently conducting ground experiments within HERA (Human Explorations Research Analog) and have begun to extend our research with astronauts aboard the ISS. The findings from these experiments will enhance our understanding of the psychological and interpersonal pathways through which entrainment operates, and individual and task attributes that can mitigate its effects. This could lead to the development of interventions to improve individual and team effectiveness in a variety of organizational contexts including exploration missions.

HERA Campaigns: In 2017, we tested our hypotheses in three HERA missions, one of which was cut short by Hurricane Harvey. Consequently, we plan to continue testing our hypotheses with HERA missions in 2018. Prior to analog participation, we collected relevant personality characteristics and demographic information of participants. In order to integrate our study as seamlessly as possible into the natural workflow of HERA non-astronaut crew members, we identified transitions between independent and interdependent tasks that are performed regularly by all crew members and for which performance data is already available. In other words, we did not introduce any new tasks, but rather utilized the existing maintenance and other payload tasks which were scheduled to occur during the mission. With this information in mind, we were able to select a finalized series of “task-transition-task” episodes to serve as the focal point of the study. After the completion of the second task, crew members completed a brief survey about their engagement and attention residue in the tasks. Individuals in HERA mission control recorded notes about crew member task effectiveness.

In total, we have thus far analyzed 477 task-transition-task episodes. We employed multilevel path analysis (transitions nested within individuals) to test our hypotheses. We found that NASA crews experienced attention residue when transitioning from one task to another that partially offset the positive spillover of engagement. Our results suggest that individuals may find it challenging to let go of engaging tasks, and the degree to which they hang on cognitively appears to hinder their subsequent task engagement and task effectiveness.

Overall, our findings from HERA and previous Arizona State University (ASU) lab studies reveal a better understanding of the transitional process that influences effectiveness in multifaceted work as crew members transition between tasks. Importantly, we find that engagement in a prior task can have both positive and negative consequences on subsequent tasks. On the positive side, individuals who exhibit higher levels of engagement in an initial task are more likely to experience positive affect and thereby engage in subsequent tasks, increasing their effectiveness. However, on the negative side we find that engagement in a prior task can also linger after individuals move on to subsequent tasks, negatively impacting subsequent task engagement and effectiveness. Achieving a sense of closure is critical in reducing the negative cognitive effects that can linger. When tasks are incomplete, the negative pathway remains active and reduces subsequent engagement and effectiveness. However, when previous tasks are completed, then the negative effects are short-circuited. Our ongoing research aims at helping NASA leverage the benefits of engaging work during task transitions, while limiting the associated risks of attention residue.

References

Ancona, D., & Chong, C. L. (1996). Entrainment: Pace, cycle, and rhythm in organizational behavior. Research in Organizational Behavior, 18, 251-284.

Smith-Jentsch, K. A. (2015). On shifting from autonomous to interdependent work: What we know and what we need to learn (pp. 1-31). Houston, TX: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

Kahn, W. A. (1990). Psychological conditions of personal engagement and disengagement at work. Academy of Management Journal, 33(4), 692-724.

Leroy, S. (2009). Why is it so hard to do my work? The challenge of attention residue when switching between work tasks. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 109(2), 168-181.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 03/20/2020)  Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Bush JT, LePine JA, Newton DW. "Teams in transition: An integrative review and synthesis of research on team task transitions and propositions for future research." Human Resource Management Review. In press, Corrected proof. Available online July 15, 2017. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.hrmr.2017.06.005 , Jul-2017
Project Title:  Understanding and Preventing Crew Member Task Entrainment Reduce
Images: icon  Fiscal Year: FY 2017 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Start Date: 06/01/2015  
End Date: 05/31/2018  
Task Last Updated: 03/06/2017 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   LePine, Jeffrey  Ph.D. / Arizona State University 
Address:  Department of Management 
PO Box 874006 
Tempe , AZ 85287-4006 
Email: jeff.lepine@asu.edu 
Phone: 480-965-8652  
Congressional District:
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Arizona State University 
Joint Agency:  
Comments:  
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
Wellman, Edward  Ph.D. Arizona State University 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNX15AK77G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor: Williams, Thomas  
Center Contact: 281-483-8773 
thomas.j.williams-1@nasa.gov 
Solicitation: 2013-14 HERO NNJ13ZSA002N-ILSRA. International Life Sciences Research Announcement 
Grant/Contract No.: NNX15AK77G 
Project Type: FLIGHT,GROUND 
Flight Program: ISS 
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:  
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:  
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:  
No. of PhD Degrees:  
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Team:Risk of Performance and Behavioral Health Decrements Due to Inadequate Cooperation, Coordination, Communication, and Psychosocial Adaptation within a Team (IRP Rev F)
(2) Train:Risk of Performance Errors Due to Training Deficiencies
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SHFE-TRAIN-01:We do not know which validated objective measures of operator proficiency and of training effectiveness should be used for future long-duration exploration missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How can we develop objective training measures to determine operator proficiency during and after ground training?)
(2) SHFE-TRAIN-02:We need to identify effective methods and tools that can be used to train for long-duration, long-distance space missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How do we develop training methods and tools for space medical application if time is minimal?)
(3) Team Gap 01:We need to understand the key threats, indicators, and life cycle of the team for autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
(4) Team Gap 03:We need to identify a set of countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
Flight Assignment/Project Notes: NOTE: Element change to Human Factors & Behavioral Performance; previously Behavioral Health & Performance (Ed., 1/18/17)

Task Description: The proposal responds to the request for research exploring Team Task Switching in Astronaut Crews on the International Space Station (ISS). We propose ground- and flight-based experiments to understand and mitigate the performance deficits caused by crew members switching between independent and interdependent tasks. Drawing on our own research, as well as that conducted by other scholars, we explain how crew member entrainment is produced by deep levels of cognitive, physical, and affective engagement or immersion in tasks, which make it difficult for members to disengage from those tasks – even after they have switched to a different task. We hypothesize that, as a result of this immersion/engagement, entrainment causes subsequent task engagement and effectiveness to suffer. We further hypothesize that the strength of this effect influenced by perceptions of task closure.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Scholars have conducted research on task transitions and highly variable work (Leroy, 2009; Louis & Sutton, 1991; Monsell, 2003), considering what generally makes an effective transition or worker. Unfortunately, we do not fully understand how individuals’ psychological connections to the tasks they perform fluctuate when they transition between those tasks as well as the impact on subsequent task effectiveness. A more robust understanding of the psychological connections individuals maintain with tasks – after having previously transitioned – are critical to improving and maintaining the effectiveness of crew members as well as individuals on Earth.

Leroy, S. (2009). Why is it so hard to do my work? The challenge of attention residue when switching between work tasks. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 109(2), 168-181. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.obhdp.2009.04.002

Louis, M. R., & Sutton, R. I. (1991). Switching cognitive gears: From habits of mind to active thinking. Human Relations, 44(1), 55-76. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/001872679104400104

Monsell, S. (2003). Task switching. Trends in cognitive sciences, 7(3), 134-140. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1364-6613(03)00028-7

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2017 
Task Progress: Aims of Proposal

The proposed research program begins to address the performance effects of entrainment to a particular work style and then switching to another style during an operational space flight context. Specifically, we explore what individual attributes make crew members more or less susceptible to entrainment, and what can be done to mitigate the negative effects of entrainment and improve individual and team capabilities to engage in effective task switching. In addressing these questions, the proposed studies also contribute to answering the following identified Integrated Research Plan (IRP) gaps: Team Gap 1 (need to understand threats to teams during long duration missions), Team Gap 3 (need to identify countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration missions), and Team Gap 8 (need to identify psychosocial and psychological factors, measures, and combinations thereof that can be used to compose effective crews for autonomous, long-duration missions).

We consider how crew member entrainment (Ancona & Chong, 1996) is influenced by the linkage between employee engagement and effectiveness in the context of jobs that vary in regard to required cognitive, emotional, physical, and social energies. The problem of entrainment may be especially problematic as astronauts shift between individual and crew tasks that may vary significantly in their physical, cognitive, and emotional demands (Smith-Jentsch, 2015). Although individual, job, and organizational attributes foster a base of job engagement (Kahn, 1990), features of the specific tasks that individuals transition between can also foster residual engagement, or the inability to decouple one’s energies from previous tasks, which in turn, can hinder effectiveness in subsequent tasks. In other words, lingering engagement in prior tasks after a transition has occurred (i.e., residual engagement) makes it difficult for individuals to mentally, emotionally, or socially disengage and disconnect from their prior task and focus their full attention and energy on the new task. The difficulty in transitioning also creates problems with transitions between tasks, and in turn, hinders effectiveness in subsequent tasks.

We are currently conducting ground experiments within HERA (Human Explorations Research Analog) as well as in Arizona State University (ASU) laboratory settings. The findings from these experiments will enhance our understanding of the psychological and interpersonal pathways through which entrainment or residual engagement operates, and individual and task attributes that can mitigate its effects. This could lead to the development of interventions to improve individual and team effectiveness in a variety of organizational contexts including exploration missions.

HERA Campaigns: In 2016, we tested our hypotheses in four HERA missions (16 participants over a one-year time period), and we plan to continue testing our hypotheses with HERA missions in 2017. Prior to analog participation, we collected relevant personality characteristics and demographic information of participants, leveraging pre-existing data on these characteristics where possible. Our objective is to integrate the work of this study as seamlessly as possible into the natural workflow of HERA non-astronaut crew members. To accomplish this, we identified transitions between independent and interdependent tasks that are performed regularly by all crew members and for which performance data is already available. In other words, we did not introduce any new tasks, but rather utilized the existing maintenance and other payload tasks which were scheduled to occur during the mission. With this information in mind, we were able to select a finalized series of “task-transition-task” episodes to serve as the focal point of the study. After the completion of the second task, crew members completed a brief survey about their engagement and residual engagement in the tasks. Individuals in HERA mission control recorded notes about crew member task effectiveness.

In total, we captured 352 task-transition-task episodes. We employed multilevel path analysis (transitions nested within individuals) to test our hypotheses. We found that NASA crews experienced residual engagement when transitioning from one task to another that partially offset the positive spillover of engagement. Our results suggest that individuals may find it challenging to let go of engaging tasks, and the degree to which they hang on cognitively and emotionally appears to hinder their subsequent task engagement and task effectiveness.

ASU Lab Studies: We recruited 364 undergraduates to participate in a lab study in exchange for course credit. Participants were randomly assigned onto a team of four individuals. Each team completed an interdependent team task, during which time each individual filled a unique role on the team. Following the completion of the team task, participants transitioned to an individual task. Our preliminary results show that individuals who were engaged in the team task experienced a higher degree of residual engagement during the individual task. Further, residual engagement in the first task (during the second task) resulted in diminished levels of engagement in the second task as well as lower levels of effectiveness in the second task. We found that these effects were particularly strong when individuals perceived the prior task was incomplete or unfinished. However, we also found that the positive indirect effects between task engagement were mediated by positive affect.

Overall, these preliminary findings reveal a better understanding of the transitional process that influences effectiveness in multifaceted work as individuals transition between tasks. Importantly, we find that engagement in a prior task can have both positive and negative consequences on subsequent tasks. On the positive side, individuals who exhibit higher levels of engagement in an initial task are more likely to experience positive affect and thereby engage in subsequent tasks, increasing their effectiveness. However, on the negative side we find that engagement in a prior task can also linger after individuals move on to subsequent tasks, negatively impacting subsequent task engagement and effectiveness. Our ongoing research aims at helping NASA leverage the benefits of engaging work during task transitions, while limiting the associated risks.

References

Ancona, D., & Chong, C. L. (1996). Entrainment: Pace, cycle, and rhythm in organizational behavior. Research in Organizational Behavior, 18, 251-284.

Smith-Jentsch, K. A. (2015). On shifting from autonomous to interdependent work: What we know and what we need to learn (pp. 1-31). Houston, TX: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

Kahn, W. A. (1990). Psychological conditions of personal engagement and disengagement at work. Academy of Management Journal, 33(4), 692-724.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 03/20/2020)  Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
 None in FY 2017
Project Title:  Understanding and Preventing Crew Member Task Entrainment Reduce
Images: icon  Fiscal Year: FY 2016 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Start Date: 06/01/2015  
End Date: 05/31/2018  
Task Last Updated: 03/30/2016 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   LePine, Jeffrey  Ph.D. / Arizona State University 
Address:  Department of Management 
PO Box 874006 
Tempe , AZ 85287-4006 
Email: jeff.lepine@asu.edu 
Phone: 480-965-8652  
Congressional District:
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Arizona State University 
Joint Agency:  
Comments:  
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
Wellman, Edward  Ph.D. Arizona State University 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNX15AK77G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor:  
Center Contact:   
Solicitation: 2013-14 HERO NNJ13ZSA002N-ILSRA. International Life Sciences Research Announcement 
Grant/Contract No.: NNX15AK77G 
Project Type: FLIGHT,GROUND 
Flight Program: ISS 
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:  
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:  
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:  
No. of PhD Degrees:  
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Team:Risk of Performance and Behavioral Health Decrements Due to Inadequate Cooperation, Coordination, Communication, and Psychosocial Adaptation within a Team (IRP Rev F)
(2) Train:Risk of Performance Errors Due to Training Deficiencies
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SHFE-TRAIN-01:We do not know which validated objective measures of operator proficiency and of training effectiveness should be used for future long-duration exploration missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How can we develop objective training measures to determine operator proficiency during and after ground training?)
(2) SHFE-TRAIN-02:We need to identify effective methods and tools that can be used to train for long-duration, long-distance space missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How do we develop training methods and tools for space medical application if time is minimal?)
(3) Team Gap 01:We need to understand the key threats, indicators, and life cycle of the team for autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
(4) Team Gap 03:We need to identify a set of countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
Flight Assignment/Project Notes: NOTE: Element change to Human Factors & Behavioral Performance; previously Behavioral Health & Performance (Ed., 1/18/17)

Task Description: The proposal responds to the request for research exploring Team Task Switching in Astronaut Crews on the International Space Station (ISS). We propose ground- and flight-based experiments to understand and mitigate the performance deficits caused by crew members switching between independent and interdependent tasks. Drawing on our own research, as well as that conducted by other scholars, we explain how crew member entrainment is produced by deep levels of cognitive, physical, and affective engagement or immersion in tasks, which make it difficult for members to disengage from those tasks – even after they have switched to a different task. With independent tasks, crew member immersion is grounded in features of the task, whereas in interdependent tasks, immersion is grounded in the task as well as in the connections that exist between members to coordinate interaction. We hypothesize that, as a result of this immersion/engagement, entrainment should cause the performance of teams that switch between independent and interdependent tasks to suffer. We further hypothesize that the strength of this effect influenced by member cognitive ability, goal difficulty, engagement, task complexity, and time spent on the prior tasks. We draw upon our understanding of the entrainment process to propose an intervention that will help crews transition more efficiently between critical independent and interdependent tasks and improve collective performance.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Scholars have conducted research on task transitions and highly variable work (Louis & Sutton, 1991; Marks et al., 2001; Rotundo & Sackett, 2002), considering what generally makes an effective transition or worker. Unfortunately, we do not fully understand how individuals’ psychological connections to the tasks they perform influences transitions between those tasks as well as subsequent task effectiveness. A more robust understanding of the psychological connections individuals maintain with tasks – after having previously transitioned – are critical to improving and maintaining the effectiveness of crew members as well as individuals on Earth.

Louis, M. R., & Sutton, R. I. (1991). Switching cognitive gears: From habits of mind to active thinking. Human Relations, 44(1), 55-76.

Marks, M. A., Mathieu, J. E., & Zaccaro, S. J. (2001). A temporally based framework and taxonomy of team processes. Academy of Management Review, 26(3), 356-376.

Rotundo, M., & Sackett, P. R. (2002). The relative importance of task, citizenship, and counterproductive performance to global ratings of job performance: A policy-capturing approach. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87(1), 66-80.

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2016 
Task Progress: The proposed research program begins to address the performance effects of entrainment to a particular work style and then switching to another style during an operational space flight context. Specifically, we explore what individual attributes make crew members more or less susceptible to entrainment, and what can be done to mitigate the negative effects of entrainment and improve individual and team capabilities to engage in effective task switching. In addressing these questions, the proposed studies also contribute to answering the following identified Integrated Research Plan (IRP) gaps: Team Gap 1 (need to understand threats to teams during long duration missions), Team Gap 3 (need to identify countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration missions), and Team Gap 8 (need to identify psychosocial and psychological factors, measures, and combinations thereof that can be used to compose effective crews for autonomous, long-duration missions).

We consider how crew member entrainment (Ancona & Chong, 1996) is influenced by the linkage between employee engagement and effectiveness in the context of jobs that vary in regard to required cognitive, emotional, physical, and social energies. The problem of entrainment may be especially problematic as astronauts shift between individual and crew tasks that may vary significantly in their physical, cognitive, and emotional demands (Smith-Jentsch, 2015). Although individual, job, and organizational attributes foster a base of job engagement (Kahn, 1990), features of the specific tasks that individuals transition between can also foster residual engagement, or the inability to decouple one’s energies from previous tasks, which in turn, can hinder effectiveness in subsequent tasks. In other words, lingering engagement in prior tasks after a transition has occurred (i.e., residual engagement) makes it difficult for individuals to mentally, emotionally, or socially disengage and disconnect from their prior task and focus their full attention and energy on the new task. The difficulty in transitioning also creates problems with transitions between tasks, and in turn, hinders effectiveness in subsequent tasks.

We are currently conducting ground experiments within HERA (Human Explorations Research Analog) as well as in Arizona State University (ASU) laboratory settings. The findings from these experiments will enhance our understanding of the psychological and interpersonal pathways through which entrainment or residual engagement operates, and individual and task attributes that can mitigate its effects. This could lead to the development of interventions to improve individual and team effectiveness in a variety of organizational contexts including exploration missions.

HERA Campaigns: We anticipate testing our hypotheses in four HERA missions (16 participants over a one-year time period). We have currently completed the first wave of the HERA campaign. Prior to analog participation, we collected relevant personality characteristics and demographic information of participants, leveraging pre-existing data on these characteristics where possible. Our objective is to integrate the work of this study as seamlessly as possible into the natural workflow of HERA non-astronaut crew members. To accomplish this, we identified transitions between independent and interdependent tasks that are performed regularly by all crew members and for which performance data is already available. In other words, we did not introduce any new tasks, but rather utilized the existing maintenance and other payload tasks which were scheduled to occur during the mission. With this information in mind, we were able to select a finalized series of “task-transition-task” episodes to serve as the focal point of the study. After the completion of the second task, crew members completed a brief survey about their engagement and residual engagement in the tasks. Individuals in HERA mission control recorded notes about crew member task effectiveness. Because the campaign is only recently completed, and we have yet to gain access to performance information for this first wave, we are currently unable to comment on the data findings.

ASU Lab Studies: We recruited 363 undergraduates to participate in a lab study in exchange for course credit. 119 of the participants completed a series of online tasks, which they performed independently. The results of these findings show that participants’ engagement in the first task predicted their residual engagement during the second task. Further, when participants experienced residual engagement, their engagement and performance levels on the second task suffered. This effect was particularly strong with individuals lower in cognitive ability.

The other 244 participants were randomly assigned onto a team of four individuals. Each team completed an interdependent team task, during which time each individual filled a unique role on the team. Following the completion of the team task, participants transitioned to an individual task. Our preliminary results show that individuals who were engaged in the team task experienced a higher degree of residual engagement during the individual task. Further, residual engagement in the first task (during the second task) resulted in diminished levels of engagement in the second task as well as lower levels of effectiveness in the second task.

Overall, these preliminary findings reveal a better understanding of the transitional process that influences effectiveness in multifaceted work as individuals transition between tasks. Importantly, we find that engagement in a prior task can have both positive and negative consequences on subsequent tasks. On the positive side, individuals who exhibit higher levels of engagement in an initial task are more likely to engage in subsequent tasks, increasing their effectiveness. However, on the negative side we find that engagement in a prior task can also linger after individuals move on to subsequent tasks, negatively impacting subsequent task engagement and effectiveness. Our ongoing research aims at helping NASA leverage the benefits of engaging work during task transitions, while limiting the associated risks.

References

Ancona, D., & Chong, C. L. (1996). Entrainment: Pace, cycle, and rhythm in organizational behavior. Research in Organizational Behavior, 18, 251-284.

Smith-Jentsch, K. A. (2015). On shifting from autonomous to interdependent work: What we know and what we need to learn (pp. 1-31). Houston, TX: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

Kahn, W. A. (1990). Psychological conditions of personal engagement and disengagement at work. Academy of Management Journal, 33(4), 692-724.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 03/20/2020)  Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
 None in FY 2016
Project Title:  Understanding and Preventing Crew Member Task Entrainment Reduce
Images: icon  Fiscal Year: FY 2015 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Start Date: 06/01/2015  
End Date: 05/31/2018  
Task Last Updated: 08/11/2015 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   LePine, Jeffrey  Ph.D. / Arizona State University 
Address:  Department of Management 
PO Box 874006 
Tempe , AZ 85287-4006 
Email: jeff.lepine@asu.edu 
Phone: 480-965-8652  
Congressional District:
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Arizona State University 
Joint Agency:  
Comments:  
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
Wellman, Edward  Ph.D. Arizona State University 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNX15AK77G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor: Leveton, Lauren  
Center Contact:  
lauren.b.leveton@nasa5.gov 
Solicitation: 2013-14 HERO NNJ13ZSA002N-ILSRA. International Life Sciences Research Announcement 
Grant/Contract No.: NNX15AK77G 
Project Type: FLIGHT,GROUND 
Flight Program: ISS 
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:  
No. of PhD Candidates:  
No. of Master's Candidates:  
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:  
No. of PhD Degrees:  
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HFBP:Human Factors & Behavioral Performance (IRP Rev H)
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Team:Risk of Performance and Behavioral Health Decrements Due to Inadequate Cooperation, Coordination, Communication, and Psychosocial Adaptation within a Team (IRP Rev F)
(2) Train:Risk of Performance Errors Due to Training Deficiencies
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SHFE-TRAIN-01:We do not know which validated objective measures of operator proficiency and of training effectiveness should be used for future long-duration exploration missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How can we develop objective training measures to determine operator proficiency during and after ground training?)
(2) SHFE-TRAIN-02:We need to identify effective methods and tools that can be used to train for long-duration, long-distance space missions. (IRP Rev F. Previously: How do we develop training methods and tools for space medical application if time is minimal?)
(3) Team Gap 01:We need to understand the key threats, indicators, and life cycle of the team for autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
(4) Team Gap 03:We need to identify a set of countermeasures to support team function for all phases of autonomous, long duration and/or distance exploration missions (IRP Rev E)
Task Description: The proposal responds to the request for research exploring Team Task Switching in Astronaut Crews on the International Space Station (ISS). We propose ground- and flight-based experiments to understand and mitigate the performance deficits caused by crew members switching between independent and interdependent tasks. Drawing on our own research, as well as that conducted by other scholars, we explain how crew member entrainment is produced by deep levels of cognitive, physical, and affective engagement or immersion in tasks, which make it difficult for members to disengage from those tasks – even after they have switched to a different task. With independent tasks, crew member immersion is grounded in features of the task, whereas in interdependent tasks, immersion is grounded in the task as well as in the connections that exist between members to coordinate interaction. We hypothesize that, as a result of this immersion/engagement, entrainment should cause the performance of teams that switch between independent and interdependent tasks to suffer. We further hypothesize that the strength of this effect influenced by member cognitive ability, goal difficulty, engagement, task complexity, and time spent on the prior tasks. We draw upon our understanding of the entrainment process to propose an intervention that will help crews transition more efficiently between critical independent and interdependent tasks and improve collective performance.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits:

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2015 
Task Progress: New project for FY2015.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 03/20/2020)  Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
 None in FY 2015