AuthorAytes, Kregg John.
Committee ChairGeorge, Joey F.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractRecently, researchers have developed computer-based collaborative drawing tools, which make it possible for multiple users to concurrently share an electronic drawing area. This research is concerned with how these tools impact group process and outcomes. Specifically, two laboratory experiments, which differed primarily in the type of task the group performed, were conducted in order to compare the interaction and performance of small (three-person) groups using either a whiteboard or one of two collaborative drawing tools (CDTs). The group process was studied in terms of how the members worked together: either by multiple participants drawing and speaking simultaneously (interactive mode), by only one person drawing at a time (scribe mode), or by all members drawing without verbally interacting (parallel mode). The equality of participation among group members was another component of the group process that was measured. Time and solution quality served as outcomes measures of group performance. Results from the two experiments showed that whiteboard groups worked in scribe mode a significantly greater proportion of the time than did CDT groups, while CDT groups tended to work more interactively or in parallel. There was also evidence that at least some types of CDTs result in more even drawing participation among group members. However, for these experimental tasks, completion times for CDT groups were significantly longer than for whiteboard groups. There are at least three possible reasons that CDT groups took more time to complete the tasks: (1) the mechanics of drawing take longer with a CDT, (2) communication is less effective, (3) CDT groups utilize the modes of work ineffectively. It also appears that CDTs not only enabled parallel work, but actually suggested it. CDT group members seemed to be drawn into working on their own, with much longer periods of silence than whiteboard groups experienced. CDTs may make it harder for group members to remain aware of what other group members' activities, as they become focused on their own display and do not perceive the drawing and other non-verbal communication of the other group members.
Degree ProgramBusiness Administration