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Online IT Teachers' Community and Online IT Educational Research Methods:Integration and Applications (III)
|Abstract:||The concepts of CoP (community of practice) and social networking are moving toward the center stage of today’s e-Learning researches. School teachers’ professional development could be regarded as a community building that can support the experience/knowledge sharing mechanisms. Using the CoP and the social networking concepts to create and to manage an online teacher community is a potential research direction. This paper was to describe our attempts to build an online teacher’s community of practices for the past two years. Our focus was on the soft sides of online CoP building. Facilitation strategies were tried and reviewed. The hard sides, such as community software and community networking were not our foci during our study. Online gift strategy, embedded linking strategy, and newsletter strategy were tried. From June 2003 to June 2005, we have invited school technology coordinators and ICT using teachers to come to our community site (called ASE, Association for School E-learning) in the hope of forming a community incrementally through purely online approach. The aim was to construct a virtual space, also a mental and spiritual place, in which opinions and experience could freely flow and eventually would produce something collective that could have positive impacts upon the teachers. The creating and managing process was tough and didn’t reach our expected outcomes. The numbers of members were not reach critical mass. The online discussions did not form a tightly-knit social interaction. Although the management of the ASE community was not a success, the data could still give us some clues about the process of building an online teacher’s CoP. We will discuss the phenomena indicated by our data. And we also will try to find out whether there are any proper models for analyzing the data and make some predictions. This study was an exploratory one. Further studies might try to explore the underlying physical social networks of ICT-using teachers and technology coordinators for the purpose of interpreting the formation of the virtual social networks. This study also might provide some experience for creating other subject-teachers’ communities of practice.|
|Appears in Collections:||教師著作|
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