What is it about?

Task uncertainty is a key factor in teamwork research. This study analyzed the psychometric characteristics of the Spanish Model of Group Tasks Uncertainty (MITAG) in two German samples. The participants (501 team members and 104 team leaders from a German research organization) answered the MITAG together with selected items from the German Job Diagnostic Survey (JDS) and the instrument Ambiguity facets of work (Ambiguitätsfacetten der Arbeit, AfA). Confirmatory factor analysis did not reproduce the original 4-factor structure in the German sample, although the 3 newly identified factors unclarity of goals, new situations, and non-routine resemble the original factors. Results showed sound internal consistency and confirmed the convergent and discriminant validity of the new factors. The MITAG offers a concept-based short scale for researchers and practitioners.

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Why is it important?

The results show that measurements of uncertainty likely depend on cultural factors. This finding is relevant for researchers working with measurements of uncertainty, particularly if these measurements are used across cultures. For practitioners who measure task uncertainty in the context of organizational evaluations or interventions, it is an important finding that task uncertainty, in any case, is a multidimensional construct and that different subordinate factors may play different roles. The instrument that resulted from this validation study is short and practical for use in German samples and has a solid theoretical foundation.


For future research, we recommend adapting the MITAG questionnaire to increase its convergent validity, and to create an instrument with a factor structure that holds in both national cultures.

Professor Rita Berger
Universitat de Barcelona

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This page is a summary of: Validation of the group tasks uncertainty model (MITAG) in a German sample, PLoS ONE, November 2019, PLOS,
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0224485.
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