A STOCHASTIC ANALYSIS OF COMMUNICATION DEVELOPMENT IN SELF-ANALYTIC GROUPS

Authors


Dorothy Lenk Krueger (Ph.D., Temple University, 1977) is an assistant professor in the Department of Speech, University of California, Santa Barbara, California 93106. This study accepted for publication April 13, 1979.

Abstract

The purpose of this research was to examine patterns of information-processing over time in self-analytic groups. The communication in two groups was categorized by means of the Systems Information Processing Analysis (SIPA) category system. Messages were coded on four dimensions of information-processing: (1) source of information, (2) time orientation, (3) evolution of information, and (4) reduction of equivocality. The sequence of coded messages was then compared with a first-order Markov chain model. The results indicate the communication data from the groups are first-order; the groups are nonhomogeneous; stereotypy (predictability of patterns) is low to moderately high across the four dimensions; patterns in the evolution of information dimension are stationary over time. Patterns in the three other SIPA dimensions are nonstationary (time dependent) and suggest nonlinear changes. The information-processing patterns in the groups indicate that most information was spontaneously generated within the groups; the predominate time orientation was “present”; the form of message generally was either neutral opinion or new information; and moderate to moderately high uncertainty existed over time.

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