About my research

My research was set in the context of the European Commission’s eTwinning initiative and it looked specifically at the use of eTwinning Learning Events (non-formal learning). It examined how the community influences the development of teachers’ competence in online collaboration and discourse, and it considered the contribution of social aspects and online moderation.

I am very grateful to my supervisor, Dr. Julie-Ann Sime from Lancaster University, and to my eTwinning soulmate, Tiina Sarisalmi, for their invaluable support. And to my examiners, Prof. Marilyn Leask from the University of Bedfordshire and Dr. Don Passey from the University of Lancaster, for their valuable advice.
Keywords: online learning communities; community of inquiry; online collaboration; content analysis; social presence; social ties; teacher training

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Presentation of research

On Monday I had the pleasure of presenting my research to a group of teachers and academics, via Skype, at a workshop at Lancaster University. I've not had the feedback from my Supervisor yet, but certainly from my perspective it went well. There were some interesting and relevant questions at the end, which at least suggested that people were listening.

I must say I was somewhat less confident the evening before. Having done I dry run of the presentation, I felt it was too much like an academic paper - rather dry and not terribly engaging. So I reworked it with more of the spoken voice in mind, and it was a lot better. Phew.

There is nothing like having to present your ideas to focus your mind and test your own understanding. I realised as a result of this exercise that I need to be more familiar with, for example, the Community of Inquiry framework - how it is used by others and its main criticisms.

So overall a rewarding experience which has helped me to be well prepared for my presentation at Online Educa in Berlin in December.


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