2012/11/17

(In Press) Evolution of online discussion forum richness according to channel expansion theory: A longitudinal panel data analysis

Language: English
Fernandez, V., Simo, P., Sallan, J.M. and Enache, M. (2012). Evolution of online discussion forum richness according to channel expansion theory: A longitudinal panel data analysis. Computers and Education, In Press. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2012.10.020


Abstract 

The selection and use of communication media has been the centre of attention for a great number of researchers in the area of organizational communication. The channel expansion theory combines elements of the main theories in this area; however, these investigations have a static cross-sectional design rather than a longitudinal analysis. With the objective of filling this gap, we research how the perception of media richness varies over time with a longitudinal study. The results suggest that the perception of richness of a channel by different individuals is different but that those variations due to a change in acquired experiences, are influenced in a similar and significant way by all individuals over time.

Highlights

  • How the evolution of the richness perception on discussion forums vary over time
  • Uncommon study due to its longitudinal design rather than the traditional design
  • The time factor has a significant effect on the richness perception
  • The time factor has a significant effect on the usefulness of a communication media.

Keywords: Channel expansion theory; panel data; online discussion forum; media richness

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