ERIC Number: ED410734
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Feb
Enhanced Learning through Electronic Communities: A Research Review.
Burgstahler, Sheryl; Swift, Catherine
This report, in support of the project "Enhanced Learning through Electronic Communities," investigated successful practices of electronic communities. A literature review was conducted and a survey was sent to 15 system operators of networks that had a community-based focus with ancillary educational components and networks that focused primarily on education. The report summarizes findings of the published literature and provides an electronic resources review and results of the survey. The benefits of computer-mediated communication are discussed, including collaborative learning among students. Steps to establishing a successful educational electronic community are provided. These include: (1) addressing program goals and user needs; (2) involving the greater community, including people from the Chamber of Commerce, phone company, university computer department, United Way, public radio or television station, local newspaper, public library, and an attorney and accountant; (3) involving teachers in planning the system to develop grassroots support; (4) promoting a positive online culture; (5) delivering appropriate instruction, including idea generating, idea linking, and idea structuring types of learning; (6) allowing enough time to develop electronic communities and an online culture; (7) addressing technical and support issues, such as being user friendly, being compatible with the exiting state university system, and accessible to all school systems; and (8) obtaining financial and administrative support. (Contains 27 references.) (CR)
Descriptors: Community Benefits, Community Development, Computer Mediated Communication, Computer Networks, Computer Uses in Education, Cooperative Learning, Electronic Mail, Elementary Secondary Education, Guidelines, Special Education, Surveys, Teacher Participation, User Needs (Information), User Satisfaction (Information)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Science Foundation, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Washington State Office of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Olympia. Div. of Adult Education and Community Schools.; Washington Univ., Seattle.