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Using Web 2.0 Technologies for Collaborative Learning in Distance Education—Case Studies from an  Australian University

Author(s): Kristin den Exter | Stephen Rowe | William Boyd | David Lloyd

Journal: Future Internet
ISSN 1999-5903

Volume: 4;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 216;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: Web 2.0 | asynchronous tools | synchronous tools | collaborative learning | distance education | Web 2.0 community of inquiry | conceptual model | blogs | wikis

This paper explores the use of Web 2.0 technologies for collaborative learning in a higher education context. A review of the literature exploring the strengths and weaknesses of Web 2.0 technology is presented, and a conceptual model of a Web 2.0 community of inquiry is introduced. Two Australian case studies are described, with an ex-poste evaluation of the use of Web 2.0 tools. Conclusions are drawn as to the potential for the use of Web 2.0 tools for collaborative e-learning in higher education. In particular, design and integration of Web 2.0 tools should be closely related to curriculum intent and pedagogical requirements, care must be taken to provide clear guidance on both expected student activity and learning expectations, and there is a clear need to develop, support and encourage strong interaction both between teachers and students, and amongst the students themselves.
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