Advertisement

Preventing undesirable effects of mutual trust and the development of skepticism in virtual groups by applying the knowledge and information awareness approach

  • Tanja Engelmann
  • Richard Kolodziej
  • Friedrich W. Hesse
Article

Abstract

Empirical studies have proven the effectiveness of the knowledge and information awareness approach of Engelmann and colleagues for improving collaboration and collaborative problem-solving performance of spatially distributed group members. This approach informs group members about both their collaborators’ knowledge structures and their collaborators’ information. In the current study, we investigated whether this implicit approach reduces undesirable effects of mutual trust and mutual skepticism. Trust is an important influencing factor with regard to behavior and performance of groups. High mutual trust can have a negative impact on group effectiveness because it reduces mutual control and, as a result, the detection of the others’ mistakes. In an empirical study, 20 triads collaborating with the knowledge and information awareness approach were compared with 20 triads collaborating without this approach. The members of a triad were spatially distributed and participated in a computer-supported collaboration. The results demonstrated that the availability of the knowledge and information awareness approach overrides the negative impact of too much mutual trust and counteracts the development of mutual skepticism. This study contributes to further clarifying the impact of trust on effectiveness and efficiency of virtual groups depending upon different situational contexts.

Keywords

Computer-supported collaborative problem solving Group awareness Knowledge and information awareness Mutual skepticism Mutual trust 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This research project was supported by the German Research Foundation (DFG), by the European Social Fund, and by the Ministry of Science, Research, and the Arts Baden-Württemberg (Germany).

References

  1. Aiken, L. S., & West, S. G. (1991). Multiple regression: Testing and interpreting interactions. Thousand Oaks, California: SAGE Publications, Inc.Google Scholar
  2. Alpert, S. R. (2005). Comprehensive mapping of knowledge and information resources: The case of Webster. In S.-O. Tergan & T. Keller (Eds.), Knowledge and information visualization. Searching for synergies (pp. 220–237). Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag. LNCS 3426.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Amelang, M., Gold, A., & Külbel, E. (1984). Über einige Erfahrung mit einer deutschsprachigen Skala zur Erfassung zwischenmenschlichen Vertrauens (Interpersonal Trust). Diagnostica, 30(3), 198–215.Google Scholar
  4. Aubert, B. A., & Kelsey, B. L. (2003). Further understanding of trust and performance in virtual teams. Small Group Research, 34(5), 575–618.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Baker, M., Bernard, F.-X., & Dumez-Féroc, I. (2012). Integrating computer-supported collaborative learning into the classroom: The anatomy of a failure. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 28(2), 161–176.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Beers, P. J., Boshuizen, H., Kirschner, P. A., & Gijselaers, W. H. (2005). Computer support for knowledge construction in collaborative learning environments. Computers in Human Behavior, 21(4), 623–643.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bodemer, D. (2011). Tacit guidance for collaborative multimedia learning. Computers in Human Behavior, 27, 1097–1086.Google Scholar
  8. Bortz, J., & Schuster, C. (2010). Statistik für Human- und Sozialwissenschaftler (7th ed.). Berlin/Heidelberg: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Cohen, J. (1960). A coefficient of agreement for nominal scales. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 20, 37–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Cohen, J., Cohen, P., West, S. G., & Aiken, L. S. (2002). Applied multiple regression/correlation analysis for the behavioral sciences (3rd ed.). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
  11. Colquitt, J. A., Scott, B. A., & LePine, J. A. (2007). Trust, trustworthiness, and trust propensity: A meta-analytic test of their unique relationships with risk taking and job performance. Journal of applied psychology, 92(4), 909.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Cress, U. (2008). The need for considering multilevel analysis in CSCL research—an appeal for the use of more advanced statistical methods. International Journal of Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning, 3(1), 69–84.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Dehler-Zufferey, J., Bodemer, D., Buder, J., & Hesse, F. W. (2011). Partner knowledge awareness in knowledge communication: Learning by adapting to the partner. The Journal of Experimental Education, 79(1), 102–125.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Dirks, K. T., & Ferrin, D. L. (2001). The role of trust in organizational settings. Organization Science, 12(4), 450–467.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Engelmann, T., & Hesse, F. W. (2010). How digital concept maps about the collaborators’ knowledge and information influence computer-supported collaborative problem solving. International Journal of Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning, 5(3), 299–320.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Engelmann, T., & Hesse, F. W. (2011). Fostering sharing of unshared knowledge by having access to the collaborators’ meta-knowledge structures. Computers in Human Behavior, 27, 2078–2087.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Engelmann, T., & Kolodziej, R. (2012). Do virtual groups recognize situations in which it is advantageous to create digital concept maps? In A. Cañas, J. D. Novak, & J. Vanhear (Eds.), Concept maps: Theory, methodology, technology. Proceedings of the 5th International Conference on Concept Mapping (Vol. 1, pp. 172–179). Malta: University of Malta.Google Scholar
  18. Engelmann, T., Dehler, J., Bodemer, D., & Buder, J. (2009). Knowledge awareness in CSCL: A psychological perspective. Computers in Human Behavior, 25(4), 949–960.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Engelmann, T., Tergan, S.-O., & Hesse, F. W. (2010). Evoking KIA for enhancing computer-supported collaborative problem solving. The Journal of Experimental Education, 78, 1–20.Google Scholar
  20. Fransen, J., Weinberger, A., & Kirschner, P. A. (2013). Team effectiveness and team development in CSCL. Educational Psychologist, 48(1), 9–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Frazier, P. A., Tix, A. P., & Barron, K. E. (2004). Testing moderator and mediator effects in counseling psychology research. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 51(1), 115–134.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Hausmann, R. G. M., Chi, M. T. H., & Roy, M. (2004). Learning from collaborative problem-solving: An analysis of three hypothesized mechanisms. In K. D. Forbus, D. Gentner, & T. Regier (Eds.), Proceedings of the 26th Annual Cognitive Science Society (pp. 547–552). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  23. Hsu, J.-L., Hwang, W.-Y., Huang, Y.-M., & Liu, J.-J. (2011). Online behavior in virtual space: An empirical study on helping. Educational Technology & Society, 14(1), 146–157.Google Scholar
  24. Janssen, J., & Bodemer, D. (2013). Coordinated computer-supported collaborative learning: Awareness and awareness tools. Educational Psychologist, 48(1), 40–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Janssen, J., Erkens, G., Kanselaar, G., & Jaspers, J. (2007). Visualization of participation: Does it contribute to successful computer-supported collaborative learning? Computers & Education, 49, 1037–1065.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Jarvenpaa, S. L., Knoll, K., & Leidner, D. E. (1998). Is there anybody out there? Antecedents of trust in global virtual teams. Journal of Management Information Systems, 14(4), 29–64.Google Scholar
  27. Jarvenpaa, S. L., Shaw, T. R., & Staples, D. S. (2004). Toward contextualized theories of trust: The role of trust in global virtual teams. Information Systems Research, 15(3), 250–267.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Kanawattanachai, P., & Yoo, Y. (2002). Dynamic nature of trust in virtual teams. The Journal of Strategic Information Systems, 11, 187–213.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Keller, T., Tergan, S.-O., & Coffey, J. (2006). Concept maps used as a “knowledge and information awareness” tool for supporting collaborative problem solving in distributed groups. In A. J. Cañas & J. D. Novak (Eds.), Concept maps: Theories, methodology, technology. Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Concept mapping (pp. 128–135). San José: Sección de Impresión del SIEDIN.Google Scholar
  30. Kirschner, P. A., & Erkens, G. (2013). Toward a framework for CSCL research. Educational Psychologist, 48(1), 1–8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Kirschner, P. A., Beers, P. J., Boshuizen, H., & Gijselaers, W. H. (2008). Coercing shared knowledge in collaborative learning environments. Computers in Human Behavior, 24(2), 403–420.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Kramer, R. M. (1999). Trust and distrust in organizations: Emerging perspectives, enduring questions. Annual Reviews Psychology, 50, 569–598.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Lambropoulos, N., Faulkner, X., & Culwin, F. (2012). Supporting social awareness in collaborative e-learning. British Journal of Educational Technology, 43(2), 295–306.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Liang, D. W., Moreland, R., & Argote, L. (1995). Group versus individual training and group performance: The mediating role of transactive memory. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 21(4), 384–393.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Mayer, R. C., Davis, J. H., & Schoorman, F. D. (1995). An integrative model of organizational trust. Academy of Management Review, 20(3), 709–734.Google Scholar
  36. Nickerson, R. S. (1999). How we know – and sometimes misjudge – what others know: Imputing one’s own knowledge to others. Psychological Bulletin, 125(6), 737–759.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Novak, J. D., & Gowin, D. B. (1984). Learning how to learn. New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Nückles, M., & Stürz, A. (2006). The assessment tool: A method to support asynchronous communication between computer experts and laypersons. Computers in Human Behavior, 22, 917–940.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Nunnally, J., & Bernstein, I. (1994). Psychometric theory (3rd ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, Inc.Google Scholar
  40. Paul, D. L., & McDaniel, R. R., Jr. (2004). A field study of the effect of interpersonal trust on virtual collaborative relationship performance. MIS Quarterly, 28(2), 183–227.Google Scholar
  41. Peña, E. A., & Slate, E. H. (2006). Global validation of linear model assumptions. Journal of the American Statistical Association, 101(473), 341–354.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Peterson, R. S., & Behfar, K. J. (2003). The dynamic relationship between performance feedback, trust, and conflict in groups: A longitudinal study. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 92(1–2), 102–112.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Salas, E., Sims, D. E., & Burke, C. S. (2005). Is there a “big five” in teamwork? Small Group Research, 36(5), 555–599.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Schreiber, M., & Engelmann, T. (2010). KIA for initiating transactive memory system processes of computer-supported collaborating ad hoc groups. Computers in Human Behavior, 26, 1701–1709.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Shrout, P. E., & Fleiss, J. L. (1979). Intraclass correlation: Uses in assessing rater reliability. Psychological Bulletin, 86, 420–428.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Smith, G. G., Sorensen, C., Gump, A., Heindel, A. J., Caris, M., & Martinez, C. D. (2011). Overcoming student resistance to group work: Online versus face-to-face. The Internet and Higher Education, 14(2), 121–128.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Wegner, D. M. (1986). Transactive memory: A contemporary analysis of the group mind. In B. Mullen & G. R. Goethals (Eds.), Theories of group behaviour (pp. 185–208). New York: Springer.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© International Society of the Learning Sciences, Inc. and Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tanja Engelmann
    • 1
  • Richard Kolodziej
    • 1
  • Friedrich W. Hesse
    • 1
  1. 1.Knowledge Media Research CenterTuebingenGermany

Personalised recommendations