Linking Team Covenants to Peer Assessment of Simulation and Experiential Performance


  • Marian W. Boscia
  • Linda F. Turner


ABSEL members have a long tradition of seeking to improve the quality of students’ learning experiences using business simulations. Recognizing that not all students share the same level of enthusiasm for team learning, and that students prefer to have a clean demarcation for responsibility for assessed work, ABSEL researchers, over the past three decades, have explored a variety of individual and team characteristics that can affect team performance. This paper focuses on two important characteristics: potency, a shared belief that the team can succeed against its competition, and consensus, shared beliefs about the simulation and how to perform it. Because these variables are so closely linked to performance, it is important to help student groups develop these shared beliefs. However, students by themselves do not naturally develop constructive interaction patterns. The authors propose the use of team covenants as a means establishing and maintaining these patterns. The covenanting process channels the ability and motivation of team members toward their personal development, understanding of science and technology, analytical skills gains and openness to diversity. Covenants enhance the motivation of the team as a whole, provide beneficial resolutions to conflict between team members, and contribute to team performance during the simulation.