Frontiers in Psychology
A new method for assessing group synchrony is introduced as being potentially useful for objectively determining degree of group cohesiveness or entitativity. The cluster-phase method of Frank and Richardson (2010) was used to analyze movement data from the rocking chair movements of six-member groups who rocked their chairs while seated in a circle facing the center. In some trials group members had no information about others’ movements (their eyes were shut) or they had their eyes open and gazed at a marker in the center of the group. As predicted, the group level synchrony measure was able to distinguish between situations where synchrony would have been possible and situations where it would be impossible. Moreover, other aspects of the analysis illustrated how the cluster phase measures can be used to determine the type of patterning of group synchrony, and, when integrated with multi-level modeling, can be used to examine individual-level differences in synchrony and dyadic level synchrony as well.
cluster phase method, group synchrony, interpersonal coordination, group processes, multivariate analysis
Copyright © 2012 Richardson, Garcia, Frank, Gergor and Marsh. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in other forums, provided the original authors and source are credited and subject to any copyright notices concerning any thirdparty graphics etc.
Richardson, Michael J.; Garcia, Randi L.; Frank, Till D.; Gergor, Madison; and Marsh, Kerry L., "Measuring Group Synchrony: A Cluster-Phase Method for Analyzing Multivariate Movement Time-Series" (2012). Psychology: Faculty Publications, Smith College, Northampton, MA.