The Co-Construction of Duplo A Multimodal Interaction Analysis of a Multiparty Collaborative Goal-Oriented Replication-Building Task

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This thesis uncovers how social actors make use of meaning-making signs to collaborate towards a shared goal by applying a Multimodal Interaction Analysis (Norris, 2004, 2011). This thesis investigates the interactions of a visually-complex replication task in the context of social interdependence theory and research on spatial cognition, which allows for the incorporation of multiple modes and collaborative concepts to contextualise the collaborative replication task. The groups consisted of one builder and two assistants that had to work collaboratively to replicate a Duplo structure through communication and the assistants’ building tools. The focus is on the communication during the problem sequences. This thesis is relevant to interaction in which goal-shared collaboration is prevalent. As such, the thesis argues that deixis plays a leading role in the reorientation of attention during the task. Another observation is that during problem sequences the priority of gaze allocation indicates that completing the task takes scope over social and cultural norms of gaze usage. The thesis also found that the interactions were triadically oriented, which indicated by the way the social actors divided and executed their roles. The findings create an insight into the co-construction of meaning within the problem sequence through deixis, gaze and their triadically-oriented social role division, which showcase that there are patterns, albeit with individual variation, to allocate attention within these interactions.
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