Perceptions of university students regarding engagement in synchronous discussions involving teamwork during the COVID-19 pandemic

Shih-Hsiung Liu 1 *
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1 Center for Teacher Education, National Changhua University of Education, Changhua City, TAIWAN
* Corresponding Author
Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, Volume 13, Issue 3, Article No: e202332.
OPEN ACCESS   429 Views   436 Downloads   Published online: 15 May 2023
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Teamwork is usually a component of the learning assessment framework of online courses, and the timely sharing of information and feedback through synchronous communication is beneficial for team-based assignments. However, during the COVID-19 pandemic, university students did not always actively engage in virtual teamwork in online environments because they were learning from home and were subject to the effect of disruptions at home. This study explored the perceptions of university students who engaged in synchronous discussions involving teamwork during the COVID-19 pandemic. Semi-structured individual interviews were conducted with 25 Taiwanese university students. Through qualitative methods that incorporated individual interviews and a content analysis, six content concepts were established. Afterward, relational content analysis was conducted. This study revealed that the students benefited from visible synchronous discussions in terms of inquiry dialogue, project creation, and learning satisfaction. Notably, the interviewees mostly did not switch on their webcams but recognized that webcam use can benefit discussions. The participants’ decision to switch on/off their webcams was primarily influenced by their perception of the importance of a given project than by their privacy concerns. Moreover, when home-based leaning was implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic, group leaders encountered an obstruction when they were guiding their group members to engage in teamwork involving physical tasks. Future studies should explore how members should be guided to engage in teamwork involving physical tasks during synchronous discussions.


Liu, S.-H. (2023). Perceptions of university students regarding engagement in synchronous discussions involving teamwork during the COVID-19 pandemic. Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, 13(3), e202332.


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