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Learning networks and communication skills

By Kerry Musselbrook, Erica McAteer, Charles Crook, Hamish Macleod and Andy Tolmie


The project work presented in this paper is funded by the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) January‐December 1999. Our task has been to identify effective communicative practices for different technologies, in relation to the contexts in which they occur, and to feed back information about such practices to the educational community in a context‐sensitive way. The technologies at issue are: video conferencing (one‐to‐one, one‐to‐many, many‐to‐many); text‐based communication (email, bulletin boards, conferencing,) and audio conferencing (telephone tutoring, shared workspace plus audio link). The teaching and learning sites that agreed to take part in this research project provide courses to a variety of learners ‐ undergraduate, postgraduate, professional, full‐ and part‐time — in a spread of subject disciplines. The breadth and range of learning environments represented should maximize the chances of teachers in further and higher education recognizing issues and circumstances that are similar to their own and provide a rich comparative framework. The lecturers from the various teaching sites are regarded as collaborators in this research, identifying their own issues and learning needs, and providing feedback to authenticate the interpretative process. This study approach bridges the practice‐theory gap. We have completed the field work and are midway through analysing and interpreting the data in collaboration with teachers and students involved in the study. This will lead to the production of a flexible resource for individual lecturing staff which can also underpin staff development courses in good practice within networked learning environments. Further details and progress updates can be gleaned from our project web site at JISC/index.html

Topics: LB Theory and practice of education, LC1022 - 1022.25 Computer-assisted Education
Publisher: University of Wales Press
Year: 2000
DOI identifier: 10.1080/0968776000080108
OAI identifier:

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