Towards a conceptual model for Online group work - Addressing graduate skills development in Online courses
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In moving towards what Lemke (1996) terms the 'interactive learning paradigm', higher education has adopted two key principles consistent with group learning technologies: * Learning is always mediated by and occurs through language (Falk 1997; Gee 1997), and; * Learning is distributed across a range of other people, sites, objects, technologies and time (Gee 1997). A third and relatively recent principle to emerge on the higher education scene that seems to 'contradict' accepted views of group learning technologies is that: * Many universities now choose to offer 'learning resources' online. This paper examines whether Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) are 'robust' enough to support, sustain and address industry, employer and government calls for greater attention to group skills development in university graduates. Data features an examination of respondent feedback (n=171) in an 'ICT-rich' group work setting, and the subsequent ratings of group skills development over a 13 week period. This discussion offers an account of learner outcomes by adopting Kirkpatrick's (1996) four levels of evaluation of learning as a classification scheme for determining learner satisfaction (Level One), the effectiveness of learning transfer (Level Two), its impact on practice (Level Three) and the appropriation of learning behaviours by participants (Level Four). The contrasting patterns of ICT use between female and male users in the data are discussed in relation to building social presence and producing social categories online. Differences reported here indicate that ICT group work is moving forward, but opportunities to challenge rather than reproduce existing learning relations and differences, remain largely unresolved.
Doing the Public Good: Positioning Education Research AARE 2004
Copyright remains with the authors 2004 Griffith University. This is the author-manuscript version of this paper. Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.