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ERIC Number: ED533878
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 251
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1249-1484-8
A Model for Semi-Informal Online Learning Communities: A Case Study of the NASA INSPIRE Project
Keesee, Amanda Glasgow
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Oklahoma State University
Scope and Method of Study: The purpose of this study was to develop a model of informal online learning communities based on theory, research and practice. Case study methodology was used to examine the NASA Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience (INSPIRE) Project as an example of a successful informal online learning community. The case study examined how the INSPIRE project models informal online learning and how that model compares to current research in informal and online learning community education. Findings and Conclusions: This case study revealed that, while all aspects of informal learning and online education are present within the INSPIRE project, there were many factors that have led to the success of the project that do not fit into current informal or online learning community models. Many aspects of formal education are not only present, but necessary components to the success of the INSPIRE OLC where both knowledge development and community building are desired equally. A model for semi-informal online learning communities was developed based on the findings from the case study. A semi-informal online learning community uses informal, formal and online education characteristics to develop community and knowledge equally and concurrently. By including aspects of community building, a variety of activities and experiences, creating a user-friendly environment, and allowing the community to evolve over time, a successful semi-informal online learning community can be created and maintained using current research and successful real-world experiences. [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: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A