Taking a high-tech approach to business research

Posted on July 28, 2014

Kathryn Christie and a student research subject in the new behavioural lab
Kathryn Christie and a student research subject in the new behavioural lab

Kingston, ON — July 28, 2014 - Queen’s School of Business’s new behavioural lab is starting to live up to its promise as an invaluable research asset.

Located in the west wing of Goodes Hall, the lab provides a controlled environment in which to study human behaviour related to marketing, accounting, management information systems and organizational behaviour. The 42-square-metre research space includes an observation room, one-way mirrors, and a control room. Remote-controlled video and audio recording equipment and computers with specialized software provide researchers with the tools they need to conduct their studies.

QSB faculty and graduate students will use the lab for focus groups, negotiation sessions, interview modules, leadership analysis, auditing, and market research.

The lab was given its first workout by MSc student Kathryn Christie, who is completing a study on team decision-making with Associate Professor Jana Raver. From behind the one-way glass, Kathryn observed 110 teams of three conducting meetings as Commerce student subjects shared information, built trust, and resolved differences. A video camera was focused on each subject as well as the team, capturing facial expressions and other body language.  Kathryn then used face-reading software to analyze the videos and build her dataset.

“It’s incredible that we have access to this,” says Kathryn. “What I love about it is that it makes research so much easier.”

Tags: Research