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ERIC Number: ED526543
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 228
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1245-1950-0
Social Interaction within a Web 2.0 Learning Environment: The Impact on Learner Social Presence
Steinman, Debbie Cinque
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Northern Arizona University
In this case study, the researcher observed the social interactions within a Web 2.0 learning environment to examine the nature of the learner social presence. Social presence is essential to facilitate group cooperation and plays a central role in establishing learners' sense of belonging and social cohesion to the group. Social presence is defined as the extent students in online classes perceive other students in the class as being real persons. Social interaction occurs when participants are in situations where they actively observe each other and interpret the actions of others. This interaction is dynamic, constantly changing and occurs through active participation when students work together. Data sources included archival documents, discussion board posts, blog entries, Elluminate and Blackboard Vista chat sessions, a questionnaire, and interviews. Students and the instructor were included in the interview sessions. Data were coded, categorized and analyzed by the researcher. The findings suggest that through constructivist methods, learning activities were incorporated to facilitate social interactions among students. The Web 2.0 tools affected social interaction by providing the means whereby students interacted to generate content on the web and solve group project problems. Web 2.0 tools were used to provide instructor-student and student-student social communications. The findings indicate that the Web 2.0 tools were used extensively within groups and with the teacher, but were not utilized between members of the class. There was evidence of social presence between group members within their group and to a lesser extent between those outside of their group. This was reflected by student interviews where students indicated that they were able to form social connections with their group members, but had little to do with class members outside their respective groups. The student interviews were illuminating and provided insight regarding the nature of the social presence in this class. Results of this study will be of interest to instructors who are using or plan to use Web 2.0 tools in their courses. The results of this study will also facilitate improved communications with and between students and provide effective instructional strategies. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A