Evaluating idea quantity and variety when using digital collaboration tools to support brainstorming in non-collocated teams

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

The advent of modern digital communication technology has enabled engineers to effectively collaborate regardless of team members’ geographic locations. As such, introducing engineering students to virtual environments and collaborative tools is particularly important to prepare them for careers in increasingly digital environments. This study investigates how integrating online collaboration tools in students’idea generation activities impacts the i) quantity and ii) variety of ideas generated after a peer-feedback session. Students from five sections of a first-year engineering design course were assigned to either a collocated design team or a non-collocated design team to participate in a collaborative design feedback activity. Students individually generated an idea set using an online brainstorming tool (Stormboard), received peer-feedback via one of two delivery conditions (in-person or virtual through video conferencing), and revised their idea set based on the received feedback. Each final idea set was analyzed and compared to identify any differences in the final idea quantity and variety due to the assigned feedback delivery condition. Results revealed a statistically significant difference, but with minimal realistic impact on the final quantity of ideas (equivalent to a difference of one idea between groups). No statistically significant difference was found in the final variety of ideas generated between collocated and non-collocated design teams after the peer-feedback session. This suggests that feedback provided through digital collaboration tools may be used to support idea generation in non-collocated teams without being detrimental to ideation solutions. The implications of these findings are significant for faculty or students who may be involved in online learning activities centered on engineering design.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication21st International Conference on Advanced Vehicle Technologies; 16th International Conference on Design Education
PublisherAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
ISBN (Electronic)9780791859216
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019
EventASME 2019 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference, IDETC-CIE 2019 - Anaheim, United States
Duration: Aug 18 2019Aug 21 2019

Publication series

NameProceedings of the ASME Design Engineering Technical Conference
Volume3

Conference

ConferenceASME 2019 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference, IDETC-CIE 2019
CountryUnited States
CityAnaheim
Period8/18/198/21/19

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Modeling and Simulation

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