USF St. Petersburg campus Master's Theses (Graduate)


Lovia Feliscar

First Advisor

Major Professor: Wendy Rote, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Tiffany Chenneville, Ph. D.

Third Advisor

Mark Pezzo, Ph.D.


University of South Florida St. Petersburg

Document Type


Publication Date


Date Issued

April 12, 2017


A transactive memory system (TMS) refers to a psychological phenomenon in which two or more people share, encode, and retrieve knowledge (Wegner, 1987). To develop, this system requires communication between those within the dyad or group. Through communication, individuals within dyads and groups can share their knowledge and encode new retrieved knowledge from others. The importance of a TMS lies in the fact that it reduces the labor for learning new tasks and materials by allowing each individual within a group to only memorize certain information; Hollingshead (1998a) describes it as a cooperative division of labor for joint tasks. Research has shown that a more effective TMS results in better performance in joint tasks (Choi, Lee, & Yoo, 2010; Lewis, 2004; Wegner, Erber, & Raymond, 1991). Transactive memory systems have many practical implications for the development of specific group training and information directory (a system organizing sources of various information) development (Huang, Barbour, Su, & Contractorv, 2013). TMS theory also applies to many different types of groups, including emergent groups, like those who worked to help rebuild after Hurricane Katrina (Majchrzak, 2007) and geographically dispersed groups, such as specific project teams in international businesses (Espinosa, 2007; Yuan, Fulk, & Monge, 2007). To score dyads in TMS studies, current researchers have each individual rate TMS using a self-report scale and then aggregate the scores of the individuals within the dyad. The main purpose of this study was to explore the scoring methods currently used in TMS research by examining TMS rating discrepancies between members of a dyad, also referred to as informant discrepancies in the literature (De Los Reyes, Henry, Tolan, iv & Wakschlag, 2009). More specifically, we examined whether discrepancies between group members, in their individual TMS scores, predicted performance over and above the aggregate group TMS score. This study also examined how constructs related to TMS development, such as communication and conflict, consensus about expertise, and relationship length, are associated with discrepancies in perceptions of TMS within a dyad. Transactive memory systems are a relatively new construct. Incorporating informant discrepancies into our understanding of TMS may provide additional information about the formation and maintenance of TMS within a dyad and a providing a more comprehensive view of dyadic and group functioning generally.


A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts College of Arts and Sciences Department of Psychology University of South Florida St. Petersburg

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