Understanding group interaction and knowledge building in virtual learning environments

Hwee Ling Lim

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

    2 Scopus citations

    Abstract

    With the rapid adoption of online learning and training, educators have drawn different conclusions regarding the viability of e-learning in supporting interactions that result in quality learning experiences and outcomes. This chapter describes several main online educational interaction models, highlights the Community of Inquiry model for contextualizing interaction from a sociocultural constructivist perspective and explains the characteristics of virtual learning communities. This chapter advances current understandings on online group learning processes with findings from a case study on distant students' experiences during virtual synchronous tutorials. Quantitative and qualitative survey results are presented on student satisfaction with the development of their skills in computer-mediated communication, increased understanding of course content, and enhancement of their overall e-learning experience through collaborative group discussions. Finally, the implications of the findings for designing distance courses and virtual group learning activities are discussed, and recommendations offered to enhance student experiences of online group learning.

    Original languageBritish English
    Title of host publicationHandbook of Research on E-Learning Applications for Career and Technical Education
    Subtitle of host publicationTechnologies for Vocational Training
    Pages312-328
    Number of pages17
    DOIs
    StatePublished - 2009

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