performance support, kiosk, performativity, postmodern, self service, coproduction, consumer, technology, cultural studies, EPSS, HPT, Human-Machine Interaction, Electronic Performance Support, Do-It-Yourself, Training, Post-Training, Perf


Do you remember the first time you used an Automatic Teller Machine (ATM)? Or a pay-at-the-pump gas station? Or an airline e-ticket kiosk? How did you know what to do? Although you never received any formal instruction in how to interact with the self-service technology, you were likely able to accomplish your task (e.g., withdrawing or depositing money) as successfully as an experienced user. However, not so long ago, to accomplish that same task, you needed the direct mediation of a service professional who had been trained how to use the required complex technology. What has changed? In short, the technology is now able to compensate for the average consumer's lack of experience with the transactional system. The technology itself bridges the performance gap, allowing a novice to accomplish the same task as an experienced professional. This shift to a self-service paradigm is completely changing the dynamics of the consumer relationship with the capitalist enterprise, resulting in what is rapidly becoming the default consumer interface of the postmodern era. The recognition that the entire performance support apparatus now revolves around the end user/consumer rather than the employee represents a tectonic shift in the workforce training industry. What emerges is a homogenized consumer culture enabled by self-service technologies--a kiosk culture. No longer is the ability to interact with complex technology confined to a privileged workforce minority who has access to expensive and time-consuming training. The growth of the kiosk culture is being driven equally by business financial pressures, consumer demand for more efficient transactions, and the improved sophistication of compensatory technology that allows a novice to perform a task with the same competence as an expert. "The Kiosk Culture" examines all aspects of self-service technology and its ascendancy. Beyond the milieu of business, the kiosk culture is also infiltrating all corners of society, including medicine, athletics, and the arts, forcing us to re-examine our definitions of knowledge, skills, performance, and even humanity. The current ubiquity of self-service technology has already impacted our society and will continue to do so as we ride the rising tide of the kiosk culture.


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Graduation Date





Kitalong, Karla


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


College of Arts and Humanities



Degree Program

Texts and Technology








Length of Campus-only Access


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Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)