13.1: What Is Industrial and Organizational Psychology?
The workday is a significant portion of workers’ time and energy. It impacts their lives and their family’s lives in positive and negative physical and psychological ways. Industrial and organizational (I-O) psychology is a branch of psychology that studies how human behavior and psychology affect work and how they are affected by work.
Who was the first psychologist to use psychology in advertising?
- Hugo Münsterberg
- Elton Mayo
- Walter Dill Scott
- Walter Bingham
Which test designed for the Army was used for recruits who were not fluent in English?
- Army Personality
- Army Alpha
- Army Beta
- Army Intelligence
Which area of I-O psychology measures job satisfaction?
- industrial psychology
- organizational psychology
- human factors psychology
- advertising psychology
Which statement best describes the Hawthorne effect?
- Giving workers rest periods seems like it should decrease productivity, but it actually increases productivity.
- Social relations among workers have a greater effect on productivity than physical environment.
- Changes in light levels improve working conditions and therefore increase productivity.
- The attention of researchers on subjects causes the effect the experimenter is looking for.
Critical Thinking Questions
What societal and management attitudes might have caused organizational psychology to develop later than industrial psychology?
Many of the examples of I-O psychology are applications to businesses. Name four different non-business contexts that I-O psychology could impact?
Personal Application Question
Which of the broad areas of I-O psychology interests you the most and why?
Answers will vary. The student should allude to the fact that organizational psychology finds social relations of employees important and that historically workers were thought of more as individual machines rather than a social group.
Answers will vary. The student should identify organizations that are dedicated to accomplishing specific tasks, in the general sense. Examples are hospitals, non-profit organizations, government agencies (including the military), law enforcement, universities, schools, and so on.
13.2: Industrial Psychology - Selecting and Evaluating Employees
The branch of I-O psychology known as industrial psychology focuses on identifying and matching persons to tasks within an organization. This involves job analysis, which means accurately describing the task or job. Then, organizations must identify the characteristics of applicants for a match to the job analysis. It also involves training employees from their first day on the job throughout their tenure within the organization, and appraising their performance along the way.
Which of the following questions is illegal to ask in a job interview in the United States?
- Which university did you attend?
- Which state were you born in?
- Do you have a commercial driver’s license?
- What salary would you expect for this position?
Which of the following items is not a part of KSAs?
- other abilities
Who is responsible for enforcing federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant?
- Americans with Disabilities Act
- Supreme Court of the United States
- U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
- Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology
Critical Thinking Questions
Construct a good interview question for a position of your choosing. The question should relate to a specific skill requirement for the position and you will need to include the criteria for rating the applicants answer.
What might be useful mechanisms for avoiding bias during employment interviews?
Personal Application Question
What are some of the KSAs (knowledge, skills, and abilities) that are required for your current position or a position you wish to have in the future?
Answers will vary depending on the occupation and question. The question should relate to a specific skill for the job and the rating should relate to how the answer demonstrates the skill.
Answers will vary, but they could include clear measurement standards for answer and applicant quality, ensuring diversity in interviewers or multiple interviews with different diverse interviewers, and clear education about the nature of bias for interviewers and those who make hiring decisions.
13.3: Organizational Psychology - The Social Dimension of Work
Organizational psychology is the second major branch of study and practice within the discipline of industrial and organizational psychology. In organizational psychology, the focus is on social interactions and their effect on the individual and on the functioning of the organization. In this section, you will learn about the work organizational psychologists have done to understand job satisfaction, different styles of management, different styles of leadership, organizational culture, and tea.
A ________ is an example of a tactical team.
- surgical team
- car design team
- budget committee
- sports team
Which practice is an example of Theory X management?
- keystroke monitoring
- team meetings
Which is one effect of the team halo effect?
- teams appear to work better than they do
- teams never fail
- teams lead to greater job satisfaction
- teams boost productivity
Which is not a job-related factor affecting job satisfaction?
- financial rewards
- work meaningfulness
What is the name for what occurs when a supervisor offers a work-related reward in exchange for a sexual favor?
- hiring bias
- quid pro quo
- hostile work environment
- immutable characteristics
Critical Thinking Questions
If you designed an assessment of job satisfaction, what elements would it include?
Downsizing has commonly shown to result in a period of lowered productivity for the organizations experiencing it. What might be some of the reasons for this observation?
Personal Application Questions
How would you handle the situation if you were being sexually harassed? What would you consider sexual harassment?
Answers may vary, but they should include telling the person that you are not comfortable with these actions and then reporting it to human resources. The definition of sexual harassment may discuss the sexual nature of the event, feelings of discomfort, fear, or anxiety, and recurrences of events.
Answers may vary, but they should include that the assessment would include more than one question to try to understand the reasons for the level of job satisfaction. It may also include questions that assess the importance of emotional and cognitive job satisfaction factors.
Answers may vary, but they should include factors like lower job satisfaction, higher job stress, disruption of organizational culture, and other factors related to the concepts covered.
13.4: Human Factors Psychology and Workplace Design
Human factors psychology (or ergonomics, a term that is favored in Europe) is the third subject area within industrial and organizational psychology. This field is concerned with the integration of the human-machine interface in the workplace, through design, and specifically with researching and designing machines that fit human requirements. The integration may be physical or cognitive, or a combination of both.
What aspect of an office workstation would a human factors psychologist be concerned about?
- height of the chair
- closeness to the supervisor
- frequency of coworker visits
- presence of an offensive sign
A human factors psychologist who studied how a worker interacted with a search engine would be researching in the area of ________.
- cognitive engineering
- job satisfaction
What role could a flight simulator play in the design of a new aircraft?
Describe an example of a technology or team and technology interaction that you have had in the context of school or work that could have benefited from better design. What were the effects of the poor design? Make one suggestion for its improvement.
Answers will vary, but they should include that the simulator would be used to determine how pilots interact with the controls and displays within the cockpit, including under conditions of simulated emergencies.
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