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The Effective Digital Socrates: Developing Trust in Virtual Learning Communities . ALN Orlando November 2001 Nancy W. Coppola S. Roxanne Hiltz Naomi Rotter. Trust Development in Virtual Teams. Online faculty role changes Faculty perceptions of online community building

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the effective digital socrates developing trust in virtual learning communities

The Effective Digital Socrates: Developing Trust in Virtual Learning Communities

ALN Orlando November 2001

Nancy W. Coppola

S. Roxanne Hiltz

Naomi Rotter

trust development in virtual teams
Trust Development in Virtual Teams
  • Online faculty role changes
  • Faculty perceptions of online community building
  • Correlation to theories of swift trust with coding scheme
  • Strategies for trust formation
online faculty role changes prior aln presentation
Online Faculty Role Changes ( Prior ALN presentation)
  • Authors designed and conducted 20 semi-structured interviews with faculty
  • Cognitive role: deeper cognitive complexity
  • Affective role: new tools to express emotion
  • Managerial role: more detail, structure, and monitoring
swift trust concept developed by meyerson weick and kramer 1996
Swift Trust – concept developed by Meyerson, Weick, and Kramer (1996)
  • Swift trust is a concept relating to temporary teams whose existence is formed around a clear purpose and common task with a finite life span.
  • Its elements include a willingness to suspend doubt about whether others who are "strangers" can be counted on in order to get to work on the group's task...
swift trust elements
Swift Trust elements
  • ...and a positive expectation that the group activity will be beneficial.
  • It is built and maintained by a high level of activity and responsiveness.
global virtual teams prior research
Global Virtual Teams (prior research)
  • Distinct communication and behaviors
  • Analysis of behaviors and actions both in early and later stages of group work
  • Jarvenpaa and Leidner 1998
research hypotheses
Research hypotheses
  • Faculty who become successful virtual professors overcome the coldness in the electronic media with social communication clues in discussion conferences.
  • The most effective online teachers get a good start in the very first week of online classes
  • Once established, swift trust remains
research methods
Research Methods
  • Selected most effective teacher using data from student questionnaires
  • Examined instructor’s online discussion forums or conferences
  • Analyzed Introduction conference in which instructor and students introduce themselves
coding the data
Coding the Data
  • Interaction Process Analysis (Bales, 1950) (modified)
  • Pattern analysis software (QSR NVIVO)
swift trust coding scheme
Swift Trust Coding Scheme
  • Positive expectations about the course
  • Negative expectations about the course
  • Social emotional positive
  • Social emotional negative
  • Task area – asks for help
  • Task area – gives help
  • Technical/logistical/procedural
early communication
Early Communication
  • Out of 297 coded passages in the Introductions Conference
    • 35 instances of instructor social emotional positive (32) or negative (3)
    • 74 instances of student social emotional positive
  • Most frequent is “hello” or variations
expectations
Expectations
  • Enthusiasm facilitates early trust
  • Evidence of positive expectations about the course in 34 instructor instances and 89 student instances
  • “I’m looking forward to getting to know you. I hope I will have interesting discussions about diverse issues in the class.”
task related communication
Task-Related Communication
  • Coping with technical and task uncertainty is important
  • Evident in giving information
    • 15 instructor passages
    • 53 student passages
  • Evident in asking for help
    • 6 instructor passages
    • 12 student passages
later communication
Later Communication
  • Later trust formation is shown by predictable communication
  • Frequency counts show consistent pattern in first weeks and in weeks nine and ten of classes
strategies for community building
Strategies for Community Building
  • Establish early communication
    • Team members need to perceive the instructor’s presence as soon as they enter the course
  • Develop a positive social atmosphere
    • Team members respond to perceived caring in course
    • Model solidarity, congeniality, and affiliation
strategies for community building16
Strategies for Community Building
  • Reinforce predictable patterns in communication and action
    • Students need carefully structured activities and regular feedback
  • Involve team members in tasks
    • Group members need to be involved in meaningful tasks in the first week.
summary
Summary
  • In order to build swift trust at the beginning of a course, the instructor needs to structure clear contributions for each student to make, help them cope with any technical or task uncertainties, model and encourage response to each others' contributions.
  • Early encouragement of social communications (and explicit statements of commitment, excitement and optimism) also strengthen trust.
conclusions
Conclusions
  • Swift trust does form in virtual learning communities
  • Faculty overcome coldness in electronic medium with social communication
  • Effective online teachers get a good start in first week
  • Once established, swift trust carries over if high levels of action are maintained
future research
Future Research
  • Analysis needs to go beyond one instructor
  • Findings need to be correlated with semi-structured interview
  • Compare findings with an analysis of instructors not highly rated
for more details
For more details:

N. Coppola, S. R. Hiltz, and N. Rotter. "Building Trust in Virtual Teams." Proceedings of IEEE Professional Communication Society 2001 International Professional Communication Conference. Santa Fe, New Mexico, (October 2001).