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Title: Analyzing non-collocated synchronous shared visual workspace-mediated interaction and effects on conversational grounding : a study on collaborative intelligence analysis
Author: Laurence, Sean Xavier
ISNI:       0000 0004 6060 2708
Awarding Body: Middlesex University
Current Institution: Middlesex University
Date of Award: 2016
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A shared visual workspace and video in addition to voice are two functionalities or technologies which this thesis focuses on. What is clarified in this work is how these influence remote collaboration and conversational grounding in particular — where grounding refers to the pro-active process of seeking, creating and maintaining the shared meanings needed for conversational partners to communicate effectively. Additionally, this thesis clarifies how to support non-collocated synchronous mediated-collaboration around intelligence analytic tasks — away from traditional tasks that involve the identification or manipulation of physical objects which previous studies appear to favour. This research is guided by these three primary research questions: —RQ1) How can we expose aspects of conversational grounding in mediated communication involving different combinations of a video (showing a remote participant’s head and shoulder, and hands and work-area) and a fully shared visual workspace in addition to voice? —RQ2) In relation to the negotiated process of grounding, how can we explain what is happening when parties are collaborating on an intelligence task using a fully shared visual workspace? —RQ3) How can we design better fully shared visual workspace systems to support remote collaborative intelligence analysis tasks? Study1 — reported in Chapter 5, is an exploratory research which also serves as a groundwork for Study2. The findings there led to the formulation of more focused hypotheses later investigated in Study2. Further, the most significant contribution of the Study1 was the coding schema constructed for analysing the negotiation of common ground. Chapter 6, 7, 8 make up Study2. A human-participant experiment was conducted using a 2 x 2 factorial between-subjects design with 2-person teams and four media manipulations namely: video, no video, shared visual workspace and no shared visual workspace. Conversational grounding effort is operationalized as the number of repair-episodes per min (that is repair rate). Results here indicate that teams using shared visual workspace have a lower repair rate than those teams with no access to shared visual workspace. This result is statistically significant. Although teams using video equally had a lower repair rate than those teams not using video, this result was not statistically significant. This is consistent with prior research which found that a video showing a person’s face and shoulders is not terribly important in collaborative context. Results of another investigation demonstrate that regardless of the media condition, teams generally have a lower repair rate over time as the task progressed — this result was statistically significantly positive. Additionally, assessments of a questionnaire item measuring improvements of mutual agreements and shared understanding over time, showed a statistically significantly difference between the shared visual workspace group and the no shared visual workspace group, as was the participant’s rating of the effectiveness of the medium for information sharing. Results of a qualitative thematic analysis in Chapter 7 helps explain these statistical results and more. A conceptual process model of conversational grounding in shared visual workspace-mediated interaction is presented in Chapter 8. The model also summarises the research findings. The discourse there offer useful implications and guidelines for moving beyond current theories and models of the negotiation of common ground. Equally, practical design recommendations for the design of shared visual workspaces are also discussed there. Chapter 9, 10 reviews the research questions and considers how the research that has been presented addresses them, followed by a discussion of the contributions of the thesis, future work and conclusion. Overall, this thesis delivers the following contributions: —1) It advances existing knowledge silos and studies on media effects on conversational grounding — one of the ways it achieves that is by delivering a conceptual model framework for understanding conversational grounding processes in real-time remote collaborative intelligence analysis. —2) It delivers a new coding schema for the analysis of the negotiation of conversational grounding in remote work. —3) It offers four data-driven design recommendations for good practical design of shared visual workspace groupware that better support more natural communicative nuances.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available