Bridging the Gap Between Media Synchronicity and Task Performance: Effects of Media Characteristics on Process Variables and Task Performance Indicators in an Information Pooling Task

Stefan Münzer, Torsten Holmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The study examines effects of media synchronicity in a group problem-solving task. The media characteristics of parallelism, immediacy of feedback, and reprocessability are varied within text-based computer-mediated communication. The hidden profile task requires groups to exchange unshared pieces of information and to integrate them. Contrary to expectations, asynchronous media characteristics do not support the production of unshared information. Furthermore, asynchronous media characteristics result in higher engagement in integrating information during discussion. Asynchronous media characteristics decrease the coherence of the discourse and increase the mental effort of the participants. Since coherence and mental effort indicate that asynchronous media characteristics impede the information integration process, the higher engagement in information integration is interpreted as compensatory effort.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1
Pages (from-to)76-103
Number of pages28
JournalCommunication Research
Volume36
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2009

Keywords

  • computer mediated communication
  • Kommunikation
  • media synchronicity
  • information pooling
  • hidden profile
  • coherence
  • mental efford
  • Mental effort
  • Information pooling
  • Coherence
  • Hidden profile
  • Media synchronicity
  • Computer-mediated communication

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