Models to evaluate online learning communities of asynchronous discussion forums
AbstractRecent developments in learning theory have emphasised the importance of context and social interaction. In this vein, the notion of a learning community is gaining momentum. With the advent of asynchronous online discussion forums, learning communities now need not be confined to any specific geographical locations, as people can now interact with one another at any place and time convenient to them. In this paper, we describe appropriate models that can evaluate these online learning communities. We examine pertinent issues including learner-learner interaction, learner-teacher interaction, the thinking skills of the learners, the levels of information processing exhibited by learners in the online discussion, and the roles played by the online moderator. A practical example is also provided to illustrate how these models can be used. Finally, we discuss some drawbacks related to each model and ways for overcoming them.
Articles published in the Australasian Journal of Educational Technology (AJET) are available under Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives Licence (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0). Authors retain copyright in their work and grant AJET right of first publication under CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. Users have the right to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of articles in this journal, and to use them for any other lawful purpose.
Articles published in AJET can be copied, communicated and shared in their published form for non-commercial purposes provided full attribution is given to the author and the journal. Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal’s published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
This copyright notice applies to articles published in AJET volumes 36 onwards. Please read about the copyright notices for previous volumes under Journal History.