PsychNology Journal, Volume 8, Number 1, 11 – 31

Exploring Self-Presence in Collaborative Virtual Teams

Rabindra Ratan
Annenberg School for Communication, University of Southern California, USA

Béatrice S. Hasler
Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya, Sammy Ofer School of Communications, Israel


ABSTRACT
The concept of self-presence provides a framework for understanding how people connect to virtual self-representations on three distinct levels (body, emotions, and identity). The present study aims to build on previous support for the reliability and construct validity of this framework. Participants (N=81) who used avatars in a semester-long collaborative virtual group project were examined. A factor analysis of the Self-Presence Questionnaire (SPQ) was mostly consistent with the framework of self-presence, though a new sub-factor emerged, possibly due to new SPQ items or limitations of the virtual environment. Factors of self-presence were related to social presence as expected, but not to frequency of avatar changes. These findings support the framework, but deeper explorations of the concept are still necessary. 

KEYWORDS: Self-Presence, Presence, Social Presence, Avatars, Identity, Computer-Mediated Communication, Collaborative Virtual Environments

CITE AS:
Ratan, R., & Hasler, B.S. (2010). Exploring Self-Presence in Collaborative Virtual Teams. PsychNology Journal, 8(1), 11 – 31. Retrieved [month] [day], [year], from www.psychnology.org.

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