The coronavirus disease of 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has prompted schools and universities to shift their teaching to virtual classrooms from one day to the other. As a unique example, we had to virtualize the second half of a two-semester course on human-centered innovation, which heavily relies on direct interaction with and among students in small groups. In going virtual, we found adapting assignments to be only the tip of the iceberg. Despite being familiar with the students, we faced challenges in preserving high levels of creative interaction and in surveying team morale and status. Reflecting on our experiences, we detail solutions related to the lack of creative interaction by fostering off-topic chit-chat and surveying team morale by introducing more explicit communication and seeking team consent. To help teachers adapt to virtual teaching, we discuss how our mitigation approaches, which we developed in an extreme setting that required close, creative collaboration, may apply to virtual teaching in general.
Przybilla, L., Klinker, K., Kauschinger, M., & Krcmar, H. (2021). Stray Off Topic to Stay On Topic: Preserving Interaction and Team Morale in a Highly Collaborative Course while at a Distance. Communications of the Association for Information Systems, 48, pp-pp. https://doi.org/10.17705/1CAIS.04823
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