Studying Impressions and Social Interactions Online: Validating the Computer Mediated Online Round Robin (CMORR)


Research on impressions and social interactions in the field of psychology have predominately used artificial stimuli and convenience samples of undergraduates. In the present work, we introduce and validate a new experimental method, the Computer Mediated Online Round Robin (CMORR), with the aim of providing researchers a new tool to extend the study of interpersonal phenomena to new and more diverse populations. We describe the new method in detail and provide guidance for future CMORR studies. To determine if impressions formed during online interactions in virtual rooms are comparable to those formed during in-person interactions, we collected CMORR data from an undergraduate sample (N = 171) and compared the structure and accuracy of Big Five personality trait impressions to both an in-person study with the same population (N = 225), and meta-analytic estimates from the literature. The results showed similarity in the structure and accuracy of impressions, supporting the validity of using CMORR to study interpersonal perceptions.