A comparison of face-to-face and electronic peer-mentoring: Interactions with mentor gender

The present study compared the relative impact of peer-mentoring that took place either face-to-face or through electronic chat. Protégé’s were 106 college freshmen randomly assigned to a senior college student mentor and to one of the two communication modes. Fifty-one mentors interacted with one of these protégés face-to-face and one solely through electronic chat. Electronic chat resulted in less psychosocial support, career support, and post-mentoring protégé self-efficacy for those with male but not female mentors. Analyses of coded transcripts revealed that males condensed their language to a greater extent than did females in the electronic chat condition relative to the face-to-face condition. Dyads in the electronic chat condition had more interactive dialogue than did those in the face-to-face condition. Finally, dialogue interactivity predicted post-mentoring self-efficacy but only for those who communicated through electronic chat.

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