Abram Anders

Research, Media, Flows, Etc.

Networked learning boosts self-efficacy for social networking

Anders, A. D. (2018). Networked learning with professionals boosts students’ self-efficacy for social networking and professional development. Computers & Education, 127(December), 13–29. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2018.08.009

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Abstract: Previous research has recognized that networked learning—including the use of social media, blogs, and learning communities—offers unique affordances for supporting the development of self-efficacy. However, additional research is needed to examine applications of networked learning that integrate professional contexts into academic learning experiences. The present study reports on an intervention in which networked learning was used to promote student self-efficacy for social networking and professional development. The learning design integrates three techniques: a focus on developing personal learning networks, a blog-based learning community, and mastery experiences for networking with professionals. The hypothesis was that networked learning among peers in the learning community would help support the gradual development of skills and confidence for social networking, while networking to learn with professionals would amplify the impact of mastery experiences on student self-efficacy. A study of 72 undergraduate business students found that the intervention led to significant gains in self-efficacy for social networking and professional development activities. Students also reported a greater likelihood of engaging in these activities in the following year. Finally, students perceived the learning experience as relevant for their lifelong learning and professional success.

A Model of Networked Learning for Self-Efficacy

Exploring Cultural Diversity with Brainwriting and Post-It Notes

Anders, A (2017, October). Exploring Cultural Diversity with Brainwriting and Post-It Notes. 82nd Annual Association for Business Communication Conference. Dublin, Ireland.

This learning activity offers a creative approach to exploring cultural diversity. It is based on GLOBE’s cultural dimensions, but could be used with other frameworks. Participants are placed in small groups and asked to silently write examples of personal likes and dislikes on post-it notes for each cultural dimension. This brainwriting phase creates a space for individual thinking before shared group reflection. After the post-it notes are shared and discussed in small groups, they are posted on a wall to visualize the spectrum of cultural perspectives of the entire group. This exercise facilitates teachable moments by quickly generating concrete examples of cultural styles and preferences for discussion. And, it promotes reflection by illustrating how certain cultural styles may tend to dominate discussion in contrast to the full range of perspectives visualized by the final wall display.

Email vs Voicemail? A Study of B2B Buyer Communication Preferences

Anders, A., Coleman, J., & Castleberry, S. (2017). Communication preferences of business-to-business buyers for receiving initial sales messages: A comparison of media channel selection theories. International Journal of Business Communication. https://doi.org/10.1177/2329488417702476

Abstract: Recent research on media channel selection theories has called for studies exploring communication in interorganizational business relationships and for specific work functions. The present study addresses this need through an exploration of buyer-seller communication practices in business-to-business contexts. Based on a survey of buyers, it offers a comparison of e-mail and voice mail with an emphasis on preferences for initial or cold call sales messages. The study design compares the explanatory power of three prominent theories of media channel selection: media richness theory, channel expansion theory, and media synchronicity theory. Results indicate that e-mail and voice mail/phone are the most frequently used media channels for business-to-business sales communication. Buyers preferred to receive initial messages from new salespeople by e-mail. Voice mail and phone are preferred for specific processes in established relationships, including conflict resolution, negotiations, and relationship building. Of the three theoretical models, media synchronicity theory offered the most thorough and robust account of buyer media preferences and channel selection rationales. Congruent with the expectations of media synchronicity theory, buyers preferred e-mail for communication processes characterized by the conveyance of information due to its capabilities for information processing. In particular, buyers preferred the higher parallelism of e-mail—including its capabilities for engaging in multiple conversations simultaneously—as it supported multitasking working styles.

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