Rapidly changing markets demand quick turnaround from creative concepts into final products. This requires firms to have extensive collaboration in their New Product Development (NPD) teams. However effective management of teams can be difficult. In order to understand the challenges of multidisciplinary product development, this study focuses on student design teams conducting engineering design projects at RIT. This study utilizes a modified team effectiveness model based on existing literature for identifying hypothesized associations using a limited number of teams enrolled in senior design. It proposes an experimental protocol for conducting this study at a larger scale and identifies the appropriate tools needed to measure team constructs. The study provides experimental techniques to collect team characteristic data and it also develops techniques to quantify the design process. This study concludes that the experimental protocol is feasible, but that the use of latent semantic analysis is not a feasible approach to measure team mental models at the scale of the size of the MSD program. In addition, a novel method to measure product development project outcomes is proposed that is based on Axiomatic Design principles. Finally, a preliminary assessment of the expected associations suggests that five out of eight propositions behave as predicted by the team effectiveness model; however, the number of project teams used in the study are too small for these results to be conclusive.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

New products; Teams in the workplace

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Industrial and Systems Engineering (MS)

Department, Program, or Center

Industrial and Systems Engineering (KGCOE)


Marcos Esterman

Advisor/Committee Member

Ehsan Rashedi

Advisor/Committee Member

Elizabeth DeBartolo


RIT – Main Campus

Plan Codes