Avatar-Based Group Discussions in Virtual Worlds: Facilitation, Communication Modalities, and Benefits of Participation (Book Chapter Enhancement)
Natalie Nussli, University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW), Switzerland, Lucerne, Switzerland ; Kevin Oh, University of San Francisco, San Francisco, United States
IJVPLE Volume 8, Number 1, ISSN 1947-8518 Publisher: IGI Global
This article focuses on developing guidelines for the effective facilitation of avatar-based group discussions. This qualitative inquiry is guided by an investigation of (1) social affordances of avatar-based discussions, with an emphasis on social and physical presence, (2) strategies to help establish rapport with other avatars, and (3) the complexities of communication modalities (voice vs. text) in avatar-based discussions. The study also explores the benefits and challenges of participating in virtual discussions. The data originated from avatar-based discussion groups in Second Life moderated by expert hosts and co-hosts and were gathered through participant and non-participant observation. Guidelines for the effective moderation of avatar-based discussion groups are presented throughout the chapter, such as, creating a feeling of acceptance and non-judgment, communicating synchronously to support immediacy, demonstrating virtual sharing acts, using voice for humanized communication, showing social emotionality, and observing real-life social norms.
Nussli, N. & Oh, K. (2018). Avatar-Based Group Discussions in Virtual Worlds: Facilitation, Communication Modalities, and Benefits of Participation (Book Chapter Enhancement). International Journal of Virtual and Personal Learning Environments, 8(1), 1-24. IGI Global. Retrieved March 29, 2023 from https://www.learntechlib.org/p/186942/.