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Can critical thinking be promoted in online asynchronous discussion forums?

Can critical thinking be promoted in online asynchronous discussion forums?

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  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011
  • Online education has become an integral part of many colleges and universities, according to the study, with 65.5 percent of all chief academic officers reporting that "online education is critical to the long-term strategy" of an institution in 2011, up slightly from the previous year. http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011

Critical thinking in online discussion forums Presentation Transcript

  • 1. Critical Thinking in Online Discussion ForumsEDUCATION 6290 DENISE VINCENT
  • 2. Growth of Online Learning In 2011, one-third of all students in higher education are taking at least one online course.1 Increased demand for online learning coming from adult learners.
  • 3. Adults in Online Learning•Flexibility of scheduling• Rural learners have access•More economical
  • 4. Asynchronous Discussion ForumsPlays an integral role in online learningEssentially replaces the face-to-face interaction ofthe traditional classroom, with the goal of enhancingthe learning process 2Key to this is encouraging critical thinking skills,which have become a significant issue in onlinehigher education 3
  • 5. Importance of the Forum After content itself, creating a successfulasynchronous discussion forum is probably themost important aspect for an online instructor to consider 4
  • 6. Some DefinitionsOnline Learning - digitally formatted content accessible via the WorldWide Web and channels of communication for instructors and students toactively interact between and among themselves 4Adult learners are usually self-directed, older than traditional students,experiential learners Internal motivation for learning, frequently based onself-development, career advancement and achievement. Frequentlygeographically removed from other learners, instructors and resourcescompared to their on-campus peers. 5Asynchronous online discussion forums, a web applicationthat provides a virtual environment to support discussion anddebate among students where participants are not requiredto be online at the same time.
  • 7. Some Definitions (cont’d)Content analysis is a method of analyzingwritten, verbal or visual communication messages6 and is a technique often used to analyzetranscripts of asynchronous discussion groups.Critical thinking (CT) has been a challengingconcept to achieve consensus on a definition.There are many interpretations. Essentially, itmeans the ability to go beyond the informationgiven, to take on a critical stance, to evaluate, tobe metacognitively aware and to possess problemsolving capacities 7. A CT model is shown to theright. http://magnussonllc.wordpress.com/2011/05/03/process-for-critical-thinking/
  • 8. How do we Measure CT? Ultimate goal of higher education is to achieve high levels of learning. One of the ways to know is to assess and measure levels of critical thinking. Measuring CT helps provide accountability.
  • 9. Content AnalysisContent Analysis is one of the most widely-usedapproaches by researchers to measure and evaluateevidence of critical thinking in discussion forumpostings. • involves 1. breaking transcripts into units 2. assign the units to a category 3. count the number of units in each category. • quite labor intensive and time-consuming.
  • 10. Some Common Content Analysis Models 10 Using the CA framework,  Henri (1991)  Gunawardena, Lowe & Anderson several models (many (1997) loosely based on Bloom’s  Newman, Webb & Cochrane (1995) taxonomy) have been  Garrison, Anderson & Archer documented and tested. (2000 & 2001)  Hara, Bonk & Angeli (2000).  The methodologies adopted by Henri (1991) and modified by Hara et al. (2000), and Garrison et al. (2000) are among the most widely- used 8  Henri and Rigault’s (1996) model was developed purposely to assess interaction in asynchronous discussion forums in distance education
  • 11. Concerns about Online Discussion• discussions are encouraging a lower level ofthinking and dialogue than would occur in atraditional face-to-face classroom setting• lack of face-to-face interactions in online learningmay reduce instructional effectiveness for studentsof certain learning styles• inability to visualize body language and hearexpressions of voice
  • 12. Asynchronous Forums CT Benefits• allows learners more time to think critically and reflectively9• stimulates higher order thinking such as analysis,synthesis, judgment, and application of knowledge 10• no significant difference found in CT outcomes for adultlearners in online and face-to-face liberal arts studies11 “Written communication may actually be preferable to oral communication when the objective is higher-order cognitive learning” 12
  • 13. Importance of Interaction and Community to CT• Studies by Garrison, Anderson, Archer (2000),Rovai(2002), Dennen & Wieland (2007) andSchrire(2005) show collaboration adds a qualitativedimension beyond acquiring specific content of adiscipline
  • 14. Asynchronous Environment Conducive to CTStudents have more time to reflect on coursecontent and make higher level cognitivecontributions to the course than would be possiblein a traditional classroom setting.No outside distractions, so asynchronous discussionforums attained a higher proportion of higherphases of knowledge creation, mainly because thevast majority (greater than 88%) of communicationwas task oriented 13
  • 15. Asynchronous Environment Conducive to CTFindings show that learning from forum postingsare not a regurgitation of a lecture or reading… “It is a negotiated interpretation of knowledge with student ownership. The learning is deeper and more long lasting and students refine their thinking and their voice.” 14
  • 16. Role of the Instructor• Appropriate facilitation is vital to promoting CT indiscussion forums.• Instructional interventions (i.e. Socraticquestioning, exploring solutions to problems,relating to real-life situations) can foster andmaintain CT skills in online discussion.• Instructors need to model, foster, and evaluate CTskills.
  • 17. Limitations in the Research• Critical thinking is hard to define. A uniformdefinition of the term would offer improvedopportunities to assess the concept.•Lack of standardization in research models.•Content analysis is very labor intensive.
  • 18. Conclusion• Though there are limitations, adult learners areshowing critical thinking skills in asynchronousonline discussion.• The efficacy of discussion forums to promote CTdepends on a balance of design, facilitation andsupporting learner interactions so that higher orderthinking can be achieved. 15
  • 19. Areas for Future Research• What are the effects of smaller group discussion onthe development of critical thinking skills?•Can a computerized content analysis tool beincorporated into the technology of onlineeducation?
  • 20. Endnotes1. Allen & Seamen, 2011, p. 1.2. Andreson, 2009.3. Yang, Newby & Bill, 2007; Huang & Lee, 2004; Thomas, 2002.4. Ng & Murphy, 2005.5. Diaz, 2002; Tyler-Smith, 2006.6. Elo & Kingus, 2008.7. McLoughlin, 2002.8. Corich, Kinshuck and Hunt, 2006.9. Robinson and Hullinger, 2008.10.Hara, Bonk & Angeli, 2000.11. Derwin, 2009.12.Garrison, Anderson and Archer (2000), p.6.13. Schellens & Valcke, 2006.
  • 21. Endnotes• Markel (2001), p.2.• McLaughlin and Luca, 2000.
  • 22. Referencesllen, I.E., & Seamen, J. 2011. Going the distance: Online education in theUnited States, 2011. p. 1. Report prepared by Quahog Research Group, LLCand Babson Survey Research Group. Retrieved fromhttp://babson.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_6Xpu84FGPyTh6CMndresen, M.A. (2009). Asynchronous discussion forums: success factors,outcomes, assessments, and limitations. Educational Technology & Society,12 (1), 249–257. Retrieved from http://www.ifets.info/journals/12_1/19.pdfrbaugh, J.B. (2010). Sage, guide, both, or even more? An examination ofinstructor activity in online MBA courses. Computers and Education, 55,1234-1244. doi:10.1016/j.compedu.2010.05.020rend, B. (2009). Encouraging critical thinking in online threaded discussions.The Journal of Educators Online, 6. Retrieved fromwww.thejeo.com/Archives/Volume6Number1/Arendpaper.pdf 22
  • 23. References Bullen, M. & OBrien, P. (1997) Participation and Critical Thinking inComputer Conferencing: A Case Study. Paper presented to the eighteenthconference of the International Council for Distance Education, StateCollege, PA. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.Blair, K., & Hoy, C. (2006). Paying attention to adult learners online: Thepedagogy and politics of community. Computers and Composition, 23, 32–48. doi:10.1016/j.compcom.2005.12.006Chen, P.D., Lambert, A.D., & Guidry, K. (2010). Engaging online learners: Theimpact of Web-based learning technology on college student engagement.Computers and Education, 54, 1222-1232.doi:10.1016/j.compedu.2009.11.008Cheng, C.K., Pare, D., Collimore, L., & Joordens, S. (2011). Assessing theeffectiveness of a voluntary online discussion forum on improving students’course performance. Computers and Education, 56, 253-261. doi:10.1016/j.compedu.2010.07.024 23
  • 24. ReferencesChristoper, M.M., Thomas, J.A, & M.K. Tallent-Runnels (2004). Raising thebar: Encouraging high level thinking in online discussion forums. RoeperReview, 26, 166-171. Doi: 10.1080/02783190409554262Corich, S., Kinshuck, L., & Hunt, L.M. (2006). Measuring critical thinkingwithin discussion forums using a computerised content analysis tool. TheProceedings of Networked Learning, Lancaster, UK. 10-12th April, 2006.Retrieved fromhttp://www.lancs.ac.uk/fss/organisations/netlc/past/nlc2006/abstracts/pdfs/P07%20CoricDe Wever, B., Schellens, T., Valcke, M. & Van Keer,H. (2006). Contentanalysis schemes to analyze transcripts of online asynchronous discussiongroups: A review. Computers and Education, 46, 6-28.doi:10.1016/j.compedu.2005.04.005.Dennen, V., & Wieland, K. (2007). Facilitating online group discourseprocesses. Distance Education, 28, 281-298.doi:10.1080/01587910701611328 24
  • 25. ReferencesDerwin, E.B. (2009) Critical thinking in online vs. face-to-face highereducation. Media Psychology Review, 2, 1-20. Retrieved fromhttp://mprcenter.org/mpr/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=209&Itemid=Distance Education Learning and Teaching Support web site. Retrieved fromhttp://www.delts.mun.ca/ourhistory.phpElo, S., & Kingus, H. (2008). The qualitative content analysis process. Journalof Advanced Nursing, 62, 107-115. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2648.2007.04569.xFahy, P.J. (2005). Two methods for assessing critical thinking in computer-mediated communications (CMC) transcripts. International Journal ofInstructional Technology & Distance Learning, 2. Retrieved fromhttp://www.itdl.org/Journal/Mar_05/article02.htmGarrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer,W. (2000). Critical inquiry in a text-based environment: computer conferencing in higher education. The Internetand Higher Education, 2, 87–105. Retrieved fromhttp://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1096751600000166Garrison, R.D., & Innes, M.C. (2005). Facilitating Cognitive Presence 25in Online Learning: Interaction Is Not Enough. The American
  • 26. ReferencesGarrison, R.D., & Innes, M.C. (2005). Facilitating Cognitive Presence inOnline Learning: Interaction Is Not Enough. The American Journal ofDistance Education, 19, 133–148. Retrieved fromhttp://inquirygroup.edublogs.org/files/2007/10/cognitivepresence2005.pdfGreenlaw, S. A., & DeLoach, S. B. (2003). Teaching critical thinking withelectronic discussion. Journal of Economic Education, 34, 36–53. Retrievedfrom http://www.jstor.org/stable/30042522Halpern, D. F. (2001). Assessing the effectiveness of critical thinkinginstruction. The Journal of General Education, 50, 270-286. doi:10.1353/jge.2001.0024Hammond, M., & Wiriyapinit, M. (2005). Learning through onlinediscussion: A case of triangulation in research. Australasian Journal ofEducational Technology, 21, 283-302. Retrieved fromhttp://wrap.warwick.ac.uk/435/1/WRAP_Hammond_AJET_21_3.pdf 26
  • 27. ReferencesHara, N., Bonk, C.J., & Angeli, C. (2000). Content analysis of onlinediscussion in an applied educational psychology course. Instructional Science,28, 115-152. doi: 10.1023/A:1003764722829Huang, N., & Lee, D. (2004). A Discourse Analysis of AsynchronousDiscussion Board on Students Critical Thinking. In Proceedings of WorldConference on E-Learning in Corporate, Government, Healthcare, and HigherEducation 2004 (pp. 708-713). Retrieved fromhttp://www.editlib.org/index.cfm?Kim, K.J., Liu, S., & Bonk, C.J. (2005). Online MBA students’ perceptions ofonline learning: Benefits, challenges, and suggestions. Internet and HigherEducation, 8, 335–344. doi:10.1016/j.iheduc.2005.09.005MacKnight, C.B. (2000). Teaching critical thinking through onlinediscussions. Educause Quarterly, 4, 38-41. Retrieved fromhttp://net.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/EQM0048.pdf 27
  • 28. ReferencesMaurino, P.S. (2007). Looking for critical thinking in online threadeddiscussions. Journal of Educational Technology Systems, 35, 241-260.Retrieved fromhttp://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/e-jist/docs/vol9_no2/papers/full_papers/maurino.htmMarra, R.M., Moore, J.L, & Klimczak, A.K. (2005). Content analysis of onlinediscussion forums: A comparative analysis of protocols. EducationalTechnology Research and Development, 52, 23-40. doi:10.1007/BF02504837Markel, S.L. (2001). Technology and education online discussion forums: Itsin the response. Online Journal of Distance Learning Administration, 4, 1-11.Retrieved fromhttp://www.westga.edu/~distance/ojdla/summer42/markel42.htmlMcLaughlin, C. & Luca, J. (2000). Cognitive engagement and higher orderthinking through computer conferencing: We know why but do we know how?Proceedings of the Teaching and Learning Forum 2000. Retrieved fromhttp://lsn.curtin.edu.au/tlf/tlf2000/mcloughlin.html 28
  • 29. ReferencesMcLean, C. (2006). Evaluating critical thinking skills: Twoconceptualizations. Journal of Distance Education, 20, 1-20. Retrieved fromhttp://www.jofde.ca/index.php/jde/article/view/84/64Meyer, K.A. (2003). Face-to-face versus threaded discussions: The role oftime and higher-order thinking. Journal of Asynchronous LearningNetworks, 7, 55-65. Retrieved fromhttp://sloanconsortium.org/system/files/v7n3_meyer.pdfMurphy, E. (2004).An instrument to support thinking critically about criticalthinking in online asynchronous discussions. Australasian Journal ofEducational Technology, 20, 295-316. Retrieved fromhttp://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/ajet20/murphy.htmlNandi, D., Hamilton, M., & Harland, J. (2012). Evaluating the quality ofinteraction in asynchronous discussion forums in fully online courses.Distance Education, 33, 5-30. doi: 10.1080/01587919.2012.667957 29
  • 30. ReferencesPaul, R. W., (1995), “Critical Thinking: How to Prepare Students for a RapidlyChanging World.” Santa Rosa, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking.Perkins, C., & Murphy, E. (2006). Identifying and measuring individualengagement in critical thinking in online discussions: An exploratory casestudy. Educational Technology & Society, 9, 298-307. Retrieved fromhttp://www.ifets.info/download_pdf.php?j_id=30&a_id=620Peters, V. L., & Hewitt, J. (2010). An investigation of student practices inasynchronous computer conferencing courses. Computers & Education, 54,951–961. doi:10.1016/j.compedu.2009.09.030Robinson, C.C., & Hulinger, H. (2008). New benchmarks in higher education:Student engagement in online learning. Journal of Education for Business,84,101-108. doi:10.3200/JOEB.84.2.101-109 30
  • 31. References Rourke, L., Anderson, T., Garrison, D. R., & Archer, W. (2001).Methodological issues in the content analysis of computer conferencetranscripts. International Journal Of Artificial Intelligence and Education,12. Retrieved fromhttp://athabascau.academia.edu/TerryAnderson/Papers/720048/Methodological_issues_inRovai, A.P. (2004). A constructivist approach to online college learning. TheInternet and Higher Education, 7, 79-93. doi: 10.1016/j.iheduc.2003.10.002Rudd, R.D. (2007). Defining critical thinking. Techniques, 7, 46–49.Retrieved fromhttps://www.acteonline.org/...and_E.../Oct07ResearchReport.pdf 31