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Workshop: Using Partially Distributed Teams To Motivate and Enhance Student Learning  (Half-day workshop)
Starr Roxanne Hiltz,  Rosalie Ocker, Linda Plotnick and Doug Vogel


Employers seek IT graduates who are “job ready.” The 2008 Information Technology Curriculum Guidelines call on IT educators to “ease the transition from academia to the business world by teaching students to work in teams and provide significant project experiences.” This session will prepare instructors to introduce the use of global “Partially Distributed Teams”(PDTs) into their courses. A PDT has two or more collocated subgroups that are geographically separated and collaborate with each other through electronic media. This “how to” session will describe procedures and results of a multi-year project that has included over 700 students from nine universities, that teaches students the skills they will need to work in global software development teams. Procedures, findings and materials will be reviewed, including modules for training students on how to work in PDTs. Finally, participants will divide into course topic groups and develop an appropriate task and plans for future implementations.

Starr Roxanne Hiltz
(Hiltz@NJIT.edu) is currently Distinguished Professor Emerita, NJIT and the 2008-2009 Fulbright/ University of Salzburg Distinguished Chair in Communications and Media. Her research interests include virtual teams and online communities, Asynchronous Learning Networks, Emergency Response Information Systems, Pervasive Computing, and the applications and impacts of “social computing” (“Web 2.0”) systems. http://is.njit.edu/hiltz

Rosalie Ocker (
rocker@ist.psu.edu) is a Professor of Practice in the College of Information Systems and Technology (i-school) at Penn State University. For the last several years, her research has focused on partially distributed teams, a specific type of virtual team which is pervasive throughout the IT industry.

Linda Plotnick
(Linda.Plotnick@njit.edu) conducts research in Partially Distributed Teams (PDTs); her dissertation was drawn from the NSF sponsored projects that are to be reported in this session. She also conducts research in emergency response information systems. She has presented at HICSS, AMCIS, and ISCRAM.

Douglas R. Vogel (isdoug@cityu.edu.hk) is Chair Professor of Information Systems at the City University of Hong Kong and an AIS Fellow. Professor Vogel’s research interests bridge the business and academic communities in addressing questions of the impact of information systems on aspects of interpersonal communication, group problem solving, cooperative learning, and multi-cultural team productivity and knowledge sharing. He is especially engaged in introducing communication technology into educational systems. Additional detail can be found at http://www.is.cityu.edu.hk/staff/isdoug/cv/.