Team-based learning communities in virtual space

Gibbings, Peter and Brodie, Lyn (2008) Team-based learning communities in virtual space. International Journal of Engineering Education, 24 (6 ). pp. 1119-1129. ISSN 0949-149X


This paper examines how a learning management system (LMS), coupled with sound pedagogical approaches, is used to develop learning communities for students undertaking a problem-based learning university course. Students use the LMS to undertake team-based work, including meetings, communications, and submission of assessments. Data collected on students' usage of the LMS communication technology, and quotes from students' reflective portfolios, demonstrates that effective learning communities are being created in virtual space. Despite never meeting in person, off-campus students formed functional teams and reported developing a great sense of 'community', which fostered mentoring and collaborative learning.
The LMS supported the development of an online learning environment that encouraged reflective thought and dialogue with others, both of which are critical to transformative learning and social constructivism. The learner was compelled to become an active participant in the learning process, which allowed students to appreciate the value of participation, trust, mutual respect, and diversity.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © 2008 TEMPUS Publications. Published version deposited with permission of Editor.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - Department of Surveying and Land Information (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - Department of Surveying and Land Information (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Date Deposited: 02 Feb 2009 06:17
Last Modified: 02 Dec 2015 02:42
Uncontrolled Keywords: learning communities; learning management system; WebCT; problem based learning; teamwork; higher education research
Fields of Research (2008): 13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130306 Educational Technology and Computing
13 Education > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130202 Curriculum and Pedagogy Theory and Development
13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130101 Continuing and Community Education
Fields of Research (2020): 39 EDUCATION > 3904 Specialist studies in education > 390405 Educational technology and computing
39 EDUCATION > 3901 Curriculum and pedagogy > 390102 Curriculum and pedagogy theory and development
39 EDUCATION > 3903 Education systems > 390301 Continuing and community education
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9302 Teaching and Instruction > 930203 Teaching and Instruction Technologies

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