This case study examined the ways in which the communication habits of a group of people (admissions counselors) in an admissions office at a university were influenced as the office's physical location transitioned from an open to a closed office environment. The participants were surveyed during the open environment and then again after the office had moved into the closed setting. This research relied heavily on participant observation before, during and after the transition. It was determined that participants in the open office setting felt more socially connected to their colleagues, less isolated, and had more opportunities to learn through observation of their peers than in the closed environment. The closed environment afforded the participants more privacy, and possibly allowed for more productivity, but ultimately they felt less connected and informed by the work of their peers. Recommendations for further research center on balancing the best of both office environments in order to gauge productivity and employee satisfaction.
Thesis presented in partial fulfillment of the requirement for the Master of Education degree in the College of Education and Human Service Professions, University of Minnesota Duluth, 2010
Committee names: Randy E. Hyman (Chair), Diane J. Rauschenfels. This item has been modified from the original to redact the signatures present.
University of Minnesota, Duluth. College of Education and Human Service Professions
Transitioning from an Open to a Closed Office Environment: Case Study of a University Admissions Office.
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University of Minnesota. Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs; University of Minnesota. Office of the Vice President for Student Development and Athletics; University of Minnesota. Office of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs (University of Minnesota, 1995)