Top PDF Discussions on Learning in Online Networks and Communities

Discussions on Learning in Online Networks and Communities

Discussions on Learning in Online Networks and Communities

Group 4 imagined a situation where there were several dispersed communities on the internet, but the power of certification remained with the educational institutions. They considered this to be a fairly likely future, although they pointed out that it is difficult to think of anything drastically different for 2020, as it is already quite close. They perceived that, in any case, this future would end up with a few major platforms (maybe 3 or 4), and communities would not be disconnected as there would be members linking them together. Certification and curricula development would essentially be based on competences instead of content, and universities would move into multinational degrees with international comparability. Group 4 realised that it was important not to underestimate the basic skills of literacy and numeracy. Furthermore, it was important not to aim exclusively at developing competences for the labour market but developing identity should also be a goal (currently, schools are not doing either of these tasks very well). The challenges related to developing certification systems that allow mobility, take into account differences between formal and informal learning and cultural differences. It was pointed out that curricula planning should be democratic, involving more stakeholders, members of CoPs, normal citizens and systematic co-operation between educational institutions and industry.
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Learning in Informal Online Networks and Communities

Learning in Informal Online Networks and Communities

Various activities, which were previously offline, are now supported in social online settings. Collaborative production over the internet already existed before social computing, although it often took place in more closed communities and required advanced ICT skills for participation. For example, open source software development communities have existed for a long time, showing how personal interests, learning practical programming skills, collaborative production and also economic benefit can be combined. However, social computing tools are also making it possible to extend many offline activities to online settings. For example, social networking sites often connect people who also know each other offline (Cachia, 2008), extending and complementing their discussions and connections. Examples show how these online networked settings can be used for various purposes. It has been found, for example, that 50% of pupils using social networking discuss schoolwork (NBSA, 2007). 79% of workers say that they use social networks and social media for work-related reasons (Facetime, 2008). Both marketing and political campaigns are also using these channels. For example, funds can be raised through online social networking, 12 citizen organisations are using social approaches to get visibility and participation, 13 and governments can invite users to participate with their contributions. 14 YouTube, Wikipedia and blogging also provide a new means for participative journalism, where citizens can contribute to a news service with their pictures and stories, gaining visibility for the issues they are interested in.
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Discussions on Learning in Online Networks and Communities

Discussions on Learning in Online Networks and Communities

Group 4 imagined a situation where there were several dispersed communities on the internet, but the power of certification remained with the educational institutions. They considered this to be a fairly likely future, although they pointed out that it is difficult to think of anything drastically different for 2020, as it is already quite close. They perceived that, in any case, this future would end up with a few major platforms (maybe 3 or 4), and communities would not be disconnected as there would be members linking them together. Certification and curricula development would essentially be based on competences instead of content, and universities would move into multinational degrees with international comparability. Group 4 realised that it was important not to underestimate the basic skills of literacy and numeracy. Furthermore, it was important not to aim exclusively at developing competences for the labour market but developing identity should also be a goal (currently, schools are not doing either of these tasks very well). The challenges related to developing certification systems that allow mobility, take into account differences between formal and informal learning and cultural differences. It was pointed out that curricula planning should be democratic, involving more stakeholders, members of CoPs, normal citizens and systematic co-operation between educational institutions and industry.
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Language & Online Learning: Inform, Inspire and Engage Virtual Learning Communities

Language & Online Learning: Inform, Inspire and Engage Virtual Learning Communities

that learning was enhanced when student interaction and participation were required, when the main students were forced to think deeply about a topic and prepare an initial post, and when the discussion topic supplemented another related assignment. By contrast, Du, Zhang, Olinzock &Adams (2008) found that students were most influenced by the manner of response, the size of the class, and the topic of discussion. Results from the Clark, D’Angelo and Menekse (2009) study suggested that engaging students in the exploration of a diverse set of preset discussion seed comments (from students’ previous posts) coupled with a conflict schema (promoting participation) approach led to the highest gains in learning. Outside of discussion board forums themselves, scholars have suggested using fonts and graphics to show emphasis (Sarsar & Harmon, 2017; Shonfeld, 2005), incorporating instructional videos (Barnette-Queen et al., 2005; Brecht, 2012; Hayes, 2008), sharing personal experiences with students (Mallot et al., 2014; Murdoch & Williams, 2011), designing student-led discussions (Barnette-Queen et al., 2005; Murdoch & Williams, 2011; Pelz, 2004), and ensuring an overall focus on promoting student- student interaction (Ekong, 2006; Ke, 2013; Pelz, 2004; Shonfeld, 2005).
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AUTOMATED DISCOVERY OF SOCIAL NETWORKS IN ONLINE LEARNING COMMUNITIES ANATOLIY ANATOLIYOVYCH GRUZD DISSERTATION. Urbana, Illinois

AUTOMATED DISCOVERY OF SOCIAL NETWORKS IN ONLINE LEARNING COMMUNITIES ANATOLIY ANATOLIYOVYCH GRUZD DISSERTATION. Urbana, Illinois

Further, an individual may seem to respond to one post, but in the text refer to several others, synthesizing and bringing together comments of many posters. So, while the use of reference chains provides some mechanism to approximate ‘who talks to whom’ data for threaded discussions, such approximation is not very accurate and is likely to cause an

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Language and online learning: Inform, inspire, and engage virtual learning communities

Language and online learning: Inform, inspire, and engage virtual learning communities

Online discussion forums have been the focus of a number of studies. Barnett-Queen, Blair, and Merrick (2005) investigated student perspectives of online discussions, and reported that learning was enhanced when student interaction and participation were required, when the main students were forced to think deeply about a topic and prepare an initial post, and when the discussion topic supplemented another related assignment. By contrast, Du, Zhang, Olinzock &Adams (2008) found that students were most influenced by the manner of response, the size of the class, and the topic of discussion. Results from the Clark, D’Angelo and Menekse (2009) study suggested that engaging students in the exploration of a diverse set of preset discussion seed comments (from students’ previous posts) coupled with a conflict schema (promoting participation) approach led to the highest gains in learning. Outside of discussion board forums themselves, scholars have suggested using fonts and graphics to show emphasis (Sarsar & Harmon, 2017; Shonfeld, 2005), incorporating instructional videos (Barnette-Queen et al., 2005; Brecht, 2012; Hayes, 2008), sharing personal experiences with students (Mallot et al., 2014; Murdoch & Williams, 2011), designing student-led discussions (Barnette-Queen et al., 2005; Murdoch & Williams, 2011; Pelz, 2004), and ensuring an overall focus on promoting student- student interaction (Ekong, 2006; Ke, 2013; Pelz, 2004; Shonfeld, 2005).
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Reflections on engagement in online learning communities

Reflections on engagement in online learning communities

Consideration needs to be given to breaking a class into smaller groups to reduce the overload to students of dealing with busy discussions (Albion & Weaver, 2006), to form a tighter sense of community in diverse student populations or to minimise the effect of students who dominate discussion. The forming of subgroups is itself an important area as the size and makeup can greatly influence group dynamics. If the group is reduced too far, the activity can actually become too low and momentum/motivation stifled. If synchronous chat is to be encouraged, a manageable number of students is necessary as following threads can be difficult and inclusivity is diminished. Depending on the goals of the course, it may be of benefit to have a crossdiscipline grouping whereas others might benefit from similar enrolment paths and backgrounds which can lead to the forming of a learning community extending beyond the length of the course.
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Learning Latent Local Conversation Modes for Predicting Comment Endorsement in Online Discussions

Learning Latent Local Conversation Modes for Predicting Comment Endorsement in Online Discussions

Online discussion forums provide a platform for people with shared interests (online communities) to discuss current events and common concerns. Many forums provide a mechanism for readers to indicate positive/negative reactions to comments in the dis- cussion, with up/down votes, “liking,” or indicating whether a comment is useful. The cumulative re- action, which we will refer to as “community en- dorsement,” can be useful to readers for prioritizing what they read or in gathering information for deci- sion making. This paper introduces the task of au- tomatically predicting the level of endorsement of a comment based on the response structure of the discussion and the text of the comment. To address this task, we introduce a neural network architecture that learns latent discussion structure (or, conversa- tion) modes and adjusts the relative dependence on
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Lessons Learned on Facilitating Asynchronous Discussions for Online Learning

Lessons Learned on Facilitating Asynchronous Discussions for Online Learning

Educação, Formação & Tecnologias, 3 (1), Maio de 2010    ISSN  1646‐933X  Revista EF T : http://eft.educom.pt  60  2002); and lack of motivation, commitment, and time and failure to communicate effectively (Brooks & Jeong, 2006).To address some of those challenges, a number of facilitation strategies have been described in the literature mostly focusing on instructors’ facilitation roles (Anderson, Rourke, Garrison & Archer, 2001; Kim, 2008). As an example, Duffy, Dueber, and Hawley (1998) argue that facilitators should support increasing (a) the quality of an individual learner’s analysis of the problem, (b) the quality of the counter-arguments, and (c) the quality of the evidence in the inquiry process. Other examples, are Paulsen (1995) and Mason (1991) description of teachers’ moderation roles as organizational, social, and intellectual. When serving in an organizational role, the moderator sets the agenda, objectives, and procedures for posting and interacting in an online asynchronous discussion. The social role involves reinforcement of good discussion behaviors through welcoming messages and prompts feedback with a positive tone. The intellectual role, being the most important, uses techniques to encourage a high level of students’ responses by asking questions, synthesizing key points, and nurturing the intellectual climate in online asynchronous discussions (Mason, 1991). More recently, Miranda- Pinto (2009), on her study on processes of collaboration and facilitation on online communities of practice among pre-school education professionals found a variety of moderation strategies used by the members of the community. These are (Miranda-Pinto, 2009, p.430-31): (1) get to know the members of the community, (2) use good computer-based communication strategies, (3) have some understating and experience with the topics at hand as a way to establish credibility, (4) link the content and topics discussed to practice in real contexts, (5) support sharing and candid exchange of information among members, (6) create a friendly and safe online environment, (7) provide enough time to organize and structure information, (8) address the acute social needs of the community by supporting a strong social presence, (9) help participants on overcoming challenges, and (10) motivate participation by valuing every contribution as an important step for knowledge formation and sustainability.
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Learning Linguistic Descriptors of User Roles in Online Communities

Learning Linguistic Descriptors of User Roles in Online Communities

In contrast, the topics most associated with low- activity levels include one related to asking for ad- vice or suggestions, along with a topic related to discussions of “humanity” and “sacrifice”. This is in line with anthropological theories of social roles such as legitimate peripheral participation (Lave and Wenger, 1991), which states that new users in a com- munity initially participate via simple and low-risk tasks in order to become familiar with the commu- nity jargon and norms. On Reddit, engaging in the in-group/out-group behavior could be costly if users do not have a good understanding of the community- specific norms behind those behaviors. The low-risk actions on Reddit often take the form of question- asking, as newcomers are encouraged to ask ques- tions and seek the advice of more veteran members of the community.
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Framing Situated Professional Knowledge in Online Learning Communities

Framing Situated Professional Knowledge in Online Learning Communities

The persistent nature of online debate means that community members can go back to reference prior frames that were co-constructed through interactive discussion – this provides a form of group memory that verbal discussions lack. Online community members are aware of the perspectives of other users who interact with them, making their public statements for an ‘audience’ of non-interacting readers (lurkers or passive learners), critics (those with competing perspectives), supporters (those who have demonstrated similar frames), and moderators such as the instructor [10]. Frame persistence may cause students to become aware when their individual framing of a situation conflicts with previously- discussed ways of framing similar situations, causing a form of communal metacognition where they adapt and modify their perspectives to integrate prior
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User-Centered Design of Online Learning Communities

User-Centered Design of Online Learning Communities

Of course, not all successful uses of forums result in high activity statistics. This happened in Forum 1 (ranked 10 on the postings analysis). Again, students were formed in groups to produce projects for peer review. Within-group discussions were carried out off-line (not using the online forum). Project productions were uploaded to the forum for peer review, and reviewers made the comments in the forum as well. It turned out that there were only 150 postings by students (0.66 per student), which would apparently be regarded as an unsuccessful forum. Yet, the reason behind this low number of postings was that student groups did the peer review together, and then made only one summarized comment in the forum for each production. Thus, the forum log data could not reveal the hidden dynamics among the students. Nonetheless, the students did collaborate, discuss, and make decisions.
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Developing Online Communities: A Study Of The Processes That Facilitate And Foster Online Learning Communities

Developing Online Communities: A Study Of The Processes That Facilitate And Foster Online Learning Communities

those instances when class was held synchronously stating that “it felt as if we were in the same room” (Lori, personal communication, July 9, 2016) or John, who felt there was “more interaction,” when classes were held in OpenQwaq and later added, “It is easier to interact when we are not just writing text” (John, personal communication, July 27, 2016). Teresa’s comment supports this view. She felt that “synchronous regular meetings are just like being in a classroom” (Teresa, personal communication, July 27, 2016). When students were observed in Google Hangouts where they met to conduct either their assigned discussions or plan a group project, commitment to collaborate is evident. Students listen to one another and mutual respect is evident and practiced. Zoe, an interviewee, shared the following with me, “I had to learn to listen when I started online courses. It was very different from taking courses in person” (Zoe, personal communication, July 28, 2016). Synchronous meetings where students were given an opportunity to share their projects with their peers and instructor were also viewed favorably. Observations of these recorded sessions revealed that students liked hearing about their peers’ projects and often shared resources and tips when classmates
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Analysis of Polarized Communities in Online Social Networks

Analysis of Polarized Communities in Online Social Networks

time. Those tasks are all very challenging as the available knowledge may be approximate or insufficient, and it may also become obsolete over time. Therefore, the classification into polarization classes should be able to self-update continuously by catching upcoming relevant users and discussion topics. In our experiments we used electoral data from Twitter. In this case, the polarization classes are political parties or candidates, and for each political formation at least one trivial hashtag is also known. Several works analyzed the opportunities and limitations in using Twitter as a predictor of an election’s outcome (DMBR13; TSSW10; CLOP15; GAMM11). In Chapter 3 we focus specifically on this task, proposing alternative predicting methods, but in this chapter our goal is different, as we do not draw any conclusion about the expected share of votes for the given parties or candidates. We use this specific typology of data, as they are a typical example of polarized users. We show that the proposed algorithm is able to identify candidate polarized users, by also analyz- ing the on going discussions among the respective communities. Our evaluation process is not related to electoral outcome, but we proposed an alternative method based on a control group, which can be used as a reference to measure the goodness of other methods that aim to classify the polarization of users according to a defined number of classes. The present contribution is related to the Topic Detection and Tracking (TDT) subject (All12), which has been widely explored within the scope of news stream analysis (WJSS99). In particular we focus on content and user tracking for polarized users, which is connected with the concept of controversy in Social Media, which has been studied, mostly in political contexts, using data coming from different sources (blogs (AG05b), Twit- ter (CRF + 11b), Facebook(BCD + 15), news (MZDC14)). In Chapter 5 we
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Facilitating online discussions by automatic summarization

Facilitating online discussions by automatic summarization

Abstract In the DISCOSUMO project, we aim to develop a computational toolkit to automatically summa- rize discussion forum threads. In this paper, we present the initial design of the toolkit, the data that we work with and the challenges we face. Discussion threads on a single topic can easily consist of hundreds or even thousands of individual contributions, with no obvious way to gain a quick overview of what kind of information is contained within the thread. We address the summarization of forum threads with domain-independent and language-independent methodology. We evaluate our system on data from four different web forums, covering different domains, languages and user communities. Our approach is largely unsupervised, using recurrent neural networks. Evaluation of the first version should point out where in the pipeline supervised techniques and/or heuristics are required to improve our summarization toolbox. If successful, the automatic summarization of discussion forum threads will play an important role in facilitating easy participation in online discussions.
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Developing Learning Communities in Fully Online Spaces: Positioning the Fully Online Learning Community Model

Developing Learning Communities in Fully Online Spaces: Positioning the Fully Online Learning Community Model

“Community” is frequently encountered in the online-learning literature, but its meaning requires some unraveling. Veletsianos (2016) distinguishes between “groups,” “networks,” and “communities,” arguing that communities are made distinct by their focus on commitment, coherence and continuity. Jezegou (2010) argued that the CoI lacked sufficient theorization regarding its community construct. Garrison (2013) addressed this gap partly through the work of Rovai (2002a, 2002b), who finds that the most essential elements of community relate to mutual interdependence among members, connectedness, trust, interactivity, and shared values and goals. However, Garrison (2013) inserts pedagogic leadership as an essential force for creating meaningful, academic communities. This emphasis on directive leadership is aligned with CoI’s incorporation of TP, and is envisioned as a safeguard against low levels of
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Networks Identify Productive Forum Discussions

Networks Identify Productive Forum Discussions

A. Computer-mediated communication Research about online student talk is typically published under keywords such as computer-mediated communica- tion (CMC) and computer-supported collaborative learning (CSCL). Many CSCL studies compare online to offline classes in terms of student achievement or satisfaction and find that the online environment does at least as well as face-to-face classes [8] . Potential strengths of forums include longer “think time” and the ability to easily reference comments from previous weeks, while draw- backs include reluctance to participate and high variability in comment quality [2,9] . The reduced-social-cues nature of text communication creates an unpredictable social gestalt in CMC. Researchers have observed both imper- sonal, highly task-focused environments, and equally strong interpersonal groups where a sense of community can even interfere with “on-task” discussions if members hesitate to disagree with each other [10] . A review by Walther [10] synthesizes early results to suggest that the speed and quality of community development are shaped by a sense of shared purpose among users, longevity of the group, and outside cues or facilitation.
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Trust on the Web: A model for online discussions

Trust on the Web: A model for online discussions

Virtual Communities (groups of people interacting using computer networks) soon formed around the first implementations of online discussion media. In every form of virtual community, whether they hold online discussions or not, there is an established group of leaders joined by numerous communicators (or "posters") which may log-in frequently or sparingly. The leader group (also called “moderators” or “administrators”) is responsible for maintaining the community in terms of both technical and social balance. Posters who cause trouble are often banned –temporarily or permanently– from participating in the discussions. Virtual communities and the discussions that form around them are definitely one of the landmarks of the new Web era and portray the implications of the Web in the new form of social interaction.
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Keeping Online Asynchronous Discussions on Topic

Keeping Online Asynchronous Discussions on Topic

According to Moore and Kearsley [8] there are three types of interaction in distance learning: learner-content interaction, learner-instructor interaction, and learner-learner interaction. It is obvious that human two-way interaction occurs between the instructor and learners and between learner and learners. What is less obvious is how interaction occurs between learner and content. Traditionally text has been the main medium used for learner-content interaction. In the context of computer-mediated communication the content has been presented using computer-based training (CBT). There isn't normally any two-way human interaction with text or CBT. Armstrong [9] reports that web-based CBT can be greatly enhanced by having the option of interacting with a real live person in chat rooms or through asynchronous communication. It would seem obvious that without some kind of human interaction, after there has been learner- content interaction, learning could be limited. Even when there is interaction between learner and instructor and learner and learner problems can still exist.
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Identifying Sensible Participants in Online Discussions

Identifying Sensible Participants in Online Discussions

In contentious online discussions, people are very quick to classify other participants as being ‘sensi- ble’ or not. What exactly this means is very hard to define. However, if one looks beyond the flip- pant ‘anyone who agrees with me is sensible’, it is possible to identify characteristics that tend to signal more thoughtful contributions. These include avoid- ing ad hominem attacks, making contributions that others respond favorably towards, obeying common rules of discourse, and so on. Sensibleness of a par- ticipant is quantified based on his/her contribution to the discussion, which is relevant to the discussion and reasoned in a way that is appealing to other par- ticipants.
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