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Online Collaborative Learning

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Presentation by Professor Geoffrey Z. Liu.

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Online Collaborative Learning

  1. 1. Online Collaborative Learning Geoffrey Z. Liu Professor, SJSU School of Information
  2. 2. The Research (out there) • Current research on collaborative learning in online education – Student group dynamics – Technologies and system platform – Synchronous vs. Asynchronous communication
  3. 3. Implementation Strategies of CL Synchronous Asynchronous Subject Content Problem Solving ForumDiscussion Blogging,wiki,email Real-timeMeeting Groupteleconferencing P2paudiochat,texting Individual/Communal Given topic / Free flowing Private Space In-class breakout room On-going outside
  4. 4. “Current” Practice • Instructors’ implementation of collaborative learning in online LIS education – Quantitative curricular analysis (Spring 2010) • Publicized course syllabi (web pages) • Total: 148 classes
  5. 5. Preference in Course Design 83.1% 13.5% 3.4% Forum Discussion Mandatory Optional Unspecified 35.8% 64.2% Group Project Yes No
  6. 6. Mandatory Forum Discussion 62.5% 90.8% 97.4% 81.9% 0.0% 20.0% 40.0% 60.0% 80.0% 100.0% 120.0% Full-time Part-time Required Elective
  7. 7. Student Group Decision Making • Group Project: project/problem-centered collaborative learning – Spontaneous Group Decision Making – Instructional tactics as intervention
  8. 8. Types of Group Decisions Being Made (%) Nature of Group Decision Overall Logistics Meeting date/time 2.5 Group coordination 14.5 Project Overall direction 3.7 Choosing application/problem 2.3 Planning stages 1.2 Determining project scope 8.5 Mini-tasks Identifying specific/mini tasks 6.7 Assigning responsibilities 10.2 Establishing timeline/milestones 3.2 Problem Defining and understanding 10.9 Choosing approach to solving 2.1 Developing a solution 2.1 Revisiting/re-evaluating a decision/solution 31.6
  9. 9. Behavioral Characteristics of GDM Instances (%) GDM Behaviors Overall (N=433) Brainstorming for options 24.7 Deliberating before deciding 53.6 Ranking alternatives 0.0 By formal voting 1.4 By explicit consensus 68.1 By implicit consensus 28.6 One member deciding for all 1.6 Personality dominance 10.2 Use of whiteboard 16.2
  10. 10. Key Research Findings • Preference of laissezz-faire approach to GDM, favoring unfacilitated, semi-structured process and consensus seeking • Text chat and audio teleconference both used for making group decisions – With text chat, likely to be unsure if they are heard – With audio teleconference, more likely to seek for explicit consensus; text chat for commenting • GDM efficiency correlated with group performance and learning outcome – The longer it takes to make a decision, the poorer the group performance (evaluated by final product) • Overdoing of brainstorming • Difficulty to reach group consensus • Significant amount of time spent on re-evaluating/revising group decisions already made • Personality dominance more likely to occur when meetings are facilitated by a “leader”
  11. 11. Discussion as Collaborative Learning
  12. 12. Interactivity in Forum Discussion Individual Pair Group Communal
  13. 13. Online Forum Discussion • As asynchronous collaborative learning – What makes it “collaborative”? – Topical nature: subject centered vs. problem oriented – Assigned vs. self selected topic – Class forum vs. group forum • Interactivity: concept and statistic measure – As mention of post author’s name – As “threading” (reply-to) – As relevancy of topical content – As reference to raised issue/point
  14. 14. Thanks for Listening!

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