Enabling Collaboration in a Virtual Environment

By Bruce Berryman.

Published by Journal of Technologies and Human Usability

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: February 25, 2016 $US5.00

Digital technologies and communications have multiplied opportunities for transforming the way we teach and learn by breaking down silos across borders, supporting 24/7 styles of learning, and promoting collaboration which boosts student engagement and creativity. However, a key challenge for those introducing collaborative technologies into a teaching and learning environment is that technology does not by itself ensure that users will collaborate. This paper seeks to provide new insights into the key enablers and restrainers of effective collaboration in a networked environment. To do so, it draws on a five-year Participatory Action Research study of the development and adaptation of a content management system for use by media students at RMIT University in virtual and face to face production projects. The paper’s particular focuses are the four key variables to successful collaboration that emerged during the study: trust, shared vision, technology and boundary objects.

Keywords: Collaboration, Technology, Community

Journal of Technologies and Human Usability, Volume 12, Issue 1, March 2016, pp.15-28. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: February 25, 2016 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.090MB)).

Dr. Bruce Berryman

Program Director, Professional Communication, School of Media and Communication, RMIT University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia