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Title: A Study of the Foundations of Artifact-Mediated Collaboration
Authors: Dwyer, Nathan
Suthers, Daniel D.
Issue Date: May-2005
Publisher: International Society of the Learning Sciences (ISLS)
Citation: Dwyer, N. & Suthers, D. D. (2005). A Study of the Foundations of Artifact-Mediated Collaboration. In Koschmann, T., Suthers, D. D., & Chan, T. (Eds.), Proceedings of the International Conference on Computer Supported Collaborative Learning 2005 (pp. 135-144). Taipei, Taiwan: International Society of the Learning Sciences.
Abstract: The premise of this work is that, like language, the meanings of written representations are contextual and their affordances are appropriated in sometimes-unexpected ways. This situation presents a dilemma for designers of collaborative learning technologies: there is a need for representational and interactional tools that guide and support learning through cognitive and social activities, but predefined mappings between interface elements and functionalities may be too rigid. The study reported in this paper attempts to address this dilemma by identifying the strategies that people communicating via flexible written representations use to manage their interaction, and how they appropriate the affordances of media to carry out these strategies. We analyzed how people appropriated paper-based tools for collaboration under conditions approximating online interaction. Regularities were observed in the use of limited but polymorphic repertoires for communication and expression of attitude, functional and coordinative use of space, the presence of simultaneous threads, and strategies for interruption and context setting. The results suggest a new generation of collaborative technologies that include support for multi-faceted and parallel interactions, lightweight tools for expressing attitude, context representations, and scaffolding for automatically detecting and supporting emerging conventions.
Appears in Collections:CSCL 2005

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