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

Sunday, 17 October 2010

The staff room is born

After months of reflection and preparation, the virtual staff room emerges ready for the start of the Learning Event on 25 October. Tiina and I have been working together to decide how best to integrate this social space into the learning environment and the cognitive activities. I think we have achieved a nice balance between keeping it informal as possible, whilst giving sufficient guidance and explanation that participants will understand what we are trying to achieve and what we expect from them.

The round tables are in place within a discussion forum and registration opens 19 October. Soon afterwards we should have access to information which will allow us to allocate the ~200 teachers for the welcome session.

Exciting times ahead!


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