Date of Award

2017

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Communication Studies

Department

Communication Studies

First Advisor

Abran Salazar

Abstract

This thesis on how communication technology influences group performances. The purpose of this study is to examine whether there is a difference in group performance across different communication media when groups are working on an idea-generation task. Past research proposed that different communication media contain different degrees of richness of information transmitted through media and the information richness requirements of that task. Face-to-face (FTF) communication was considered as an information-rich medium.

Computer-mediated (CM) communication was conceived as being limited in information richness. Therefore, the investigator proposed a hypothesis that groups using CM communication will outperform FTF groups when working on a task that requires a low level of richness of information such as an idea-generation task. In addition, it was proposed that the CM groups will have a higher degree of satisfaction with their performance, the process employed to work on the task, and the communication medium, than FTF groups. The participants were asked to finish an idea-generation task in groups with 5 members each and complete a questionnaire regarding their experiences. The results generally didn’t support the hypotheses and showed that there was no significant difference between FTF and CM groups in their performance, or satisfaction with performance and process. The CM groups were less satisfied with the communication medium that FTF groups.

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