Collaborating across Time Zones

Over the past couple of months, my group has been working towards our module assessment in our Virtual Environments module. In our group we have two students from Akron University in Ohio, and two students from Dublin Institute of Technology in Dublin. We have been asked to collaborate together to create a project and presentation for our class assessment. This has definitely been an interesting task we have had to undertake. It has been the first time I have ever had to work with students from another country and this has had its benefits but also some difficulties.

One of the best benefits about collaborating across time zones is that we can work with people that we have never met before and it’s amazing that we can share our ideas without having to be in the same room as them. Technology has given us the opportunity to create global networks without the cost of paying for transport. “Information and communication technologies (ICTs) have provided the infrastructure for multinational businesses, created new cultural connections irrespective of geographic boundaries and distances, and allowed an increasingly mobile global population to be connected to their friends, families, and cultures no matter where they are.”[1]

As part of our group assessment we found that a benefit of collaborating across time zones was that we did not have to meet up all of the time to get our work done. We were able to use our Facebook page to communicate with each other without the hassle of scheduling meet ups every week. This benefitted our work because we were able to concentrate on our work when we each had the time and this seemed to work extremely well for our group. A difficulty with collaborating across time zones was that we would have to wait to here communication back if we were working at different times of the day. For example if I decided to write a message in the morning I would have to wait until the afternoon to get a response and this can cause fragmented and sluggish movement when trying to get things done under a deadline. Overall the Time Zones did not create too many difficulties to our project work and this shows that today using technology enables us a society to connect frequently and efficiently.

[1] http://www.hicss.hawaii.edu/HICSS_48/Tracks/IN/INGlobal.pdf

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