Date of Award

August 2019

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Sang-yeon Kim

Committee Members

Mike R Allen, Tae-seop Lim, Erin K Ruppel


organizational communication, relational conflict, student workgroups, task conflict, workgroup cohesion


This study examines the moderating impact of group cohesion on workgroup conflict and product outcomes. The presence of conflict is hypothesized to serve an important purpose for effective group functioning, but the presence of group cohesion is expected to facilitate the role of conflict as a means to productive ends. The development and influence of task-related group cohesion in short-term contexts is of particular interest, as temporary workgroups, such as student project groups, necessarily operate within limited timeframes and uncertain social relationships. Results indicate that task cohesion provides a strong and persistent positive predictor of the outcome variables (grade, reported satisfaction, and group productivity), and often demonstrates an ameliorating effect on the negative predictive ability of workgroup conflict.