Psychonomic Science

, Volume 27, Issue 6, pp 348–350 | Cite as

Information load, group organization, and communication frequency

  • Siegfried Streufert
  • Thomas Cafferty
  • Frances Cherry
Memory, Learning, & Thinking Social Processes


Four-man teams participated in a complex decision-making task. They were separated into decision-making and information acquisition dyads who could communicate via telephone only. All information was received by acquisition dyads who were free to call decision makers whenever they chose. The effect of suboptimal, optimal (one item of information per 3 min), and superoptimal information load presented to acquisition dyads on their frequency of communications to decision makers was investigated. Increasing information load produced increasing communication frequency. The slope of the curve relating information load to communication frequency was linear but less slanted than a 1:1 input/output relationship would predict. Communication frequency was significantly different from, but more similar to, optimal information load than to experimentally induced information load. It appears that information acquisition groups can be of some value in improving information flow to decision makers. However, “imaginary” information may be transmitted to the decision makers when the amount of information received is low and suboptimal.


Decision Maker Information Acquisition Experimental Social Psychology Information Load Communication Frequency 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© The Psychonomic Society, Inc. 1972

Authors and Affiliations

  • Siegfried Streufert
    • 1
  • Thomas Cafferty
    • 1
  • Frances Cherry
    • 1
  1. 1.Purdue UniversityLafayetteUSA

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