This study adopts the functional perspective of group decision making as the theoretical framework to examine the differences between computer-mediated communication groups and face-to-face communication groups in terms of their decision-making process and performance. A field experiment was adopted by the study, which was built into a communication course involving two classes in a national university in northern Taiwan. These classes comprised 23 groups of 4 or 5 members each working for their final group projects. Of the 23 groups, 11 (51 persons) were randomly assigned to perform the task via computer-mediated communication, and the remaining 12 groups (61 persons) via face-to-face communication. The data analysis shows that most findings of the study confirm the notions of media-capacity theories. However, the findings of this study do not support the propositions of the functional perspective of group decision making. More detailed findings are discussed in the article.
- Computer-mediated communication
- Face-to-face communication
- Functional theory
- Group communication
- Group decision making