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Title: Is representational guidance culturally relative?
Authors: Vatrapu, Ravi
Suthers, Daniel
Issue Date: Jun-2009
Publisher: International Society of the Learning Sciences (ISLS)
Citation: Vatrapu, R. & Suthers, D. (2009). Is representational guidance culturally relative?. In O'Malley, C., Suthers, D., Reimann, P., & Dimitracopoulou, A. (Eds.), Computer Supported Collaborative Learning Practices: CSCL2009 Conference Proceedings (pp. 542-551). Rhodes, Greece: International Society of the Learning Sciences.
Abstract: The basic hypothesis of this research project is that since the perception and appropriation of affordances vary across cultural dimensions, representational guidance may be culturally relative. An experimental study was conducted to evaluate this hypothesis. The study design consisted of three independent groups of dyads from similar or different cultures (American-American, American-Chinese, and Chinese-Chinese) doing collaborative problem- solving in a knowledge-mapping learning environment. Participants interacted through an asynchronous computer interface providing multiple tools for interaction (diagrammatic workspace, embedded notes, threaded discussion). Based on empirical findings documenting cross-cultural variations in communication and cognition, several research hypotheses were advanced. Statistical results show that members of different cultures appropriated the resources of the interface differently in their interaction, and formed differential relations with and impressions of each other. However, analyses of the individually written essays show no statistically significant differences in learning outcomes. Implications for CSCL are discussed.
Appears in Collections:CSCL 2009

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