The Relationship Between Hazing and Team Cohesion

  • Van Raalte J
  • Cornelius A
  • Linder D
 et al. 
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Hazing has been widespread throughout history as a form of initiation into fratemities, service clubs, schools, and sport teams. Legislation and anti-hazing programming have been in effect for a number of years to reduce the negative effects and occurrence of sport hazing (MacLachlan, 2000). Although hazing is illegal in most states, some contend that hazing con- tinues for a number of social reasons that serve important team functions such as enhancing team cohesion. The purpose of this research was to evaluate the contention that hazing is associated with enhanced team cohesion. Athletes (N = 167) completed a modified version of the Group Environment Questionnaire (GEQ; Widmeyer, Brawley, & Carron, 1985), the Team Initiation Questionnaire (TIQ; Hoover, 1999), and a social desirability scale (Crowne & Marlowe, 1960). Results indicated that the more appropriate team building behaviors that athletes were involved in, the more socially cohesive they perceived their team to be. The more hazing activities they reported doing or seeing, the less cohesive they perceived their team to be in sport-related tasks. The results of this study suggest that the argument that hazing builds team cohesion is fiawed. Hazing is associated with less, not more, team cohesion.

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  • J.L. Van Raalte

  • A.E. Cornelius

  • D.E. Linder

  • B.W. Brewer

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