Teams have the potential to offer greater adaptability, productivity and creativity than any one individual can offer and provide more complex, innovative and comprehensive solutions. This necessitates sharing and developing of knowledge at a team-level, fueling the thinking about and research on team learning.
This chapter expands the topic of team learning by synthesizing insights from research on collaborative learning in the learning sciences and on teamwork in the organization sciences. In doing so, it builds on the Integrative Model of Team Learning to present recent developments in empirical work on team learning. Significant phenomena are elaborated: with regard to team learning processes, the role of conflicts and team reflexivity is explained. Next, the role of leadership in teams with regard to team learning is demonstrated. In relation to the emergent states, this chapter focuses on two phenomena that are heavily studied in team research in general, but also show to be significant in describing team learning: psychological safety and team knowledge.
Lastly, four research challenges for the field of team learning are identified. The first discusses the consequences of conceptualizing team learning as complex and dynamic for measurement and analysis. The second relates to the fact that current research mainly presents a descriptive or explanatory account of team learning and does not indicate what it implies for interventionist theories. The third concerns the awareness that (the effectiveness of) team learning processes differ depending on the type of task that the team is dealing with. The fourth and last issue zooms in on questions how to prepare the individual team member for team learning.