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ERIC Number: ED555752
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 160
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3034-8851-1
A Descriptive Study of the Factors Influencing the Degree to Which Fourth-, Fifth-, and Sixth-Grade Virtual Education Students Perceive a Sense of Virtual Community
Gerth, Dana A.
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Neumann University
Review of literature revealed a shortage of research describing the development of K-12 virtual communities and the absence of a tool to measure sense of virtual community in K-12 virtual education students. The purpose of this descriptive, quantitative study was to examine the perception of a sense of virtual community from the perspective of virtual students. The sample for this research consisted of 205 fourth-, fifth-, and sixth-grade virtual education students. The researcher combined existing research on community in the brick-and-mortar school context, and scales used to measure the sense of virtual community in virtual education and other online settings. From this analysis of existing scales, the researcher created a scale to measure the degree of virtual community perceived by the fourth-, fifth-, or sixth-grade virtual education student. The measurement instrument consisted of two sections. The first section was a 25-question Likert scale used to measure the degree of virtual community perceived by the students. The second section of the instrument required students to rank virtual classroom and face-to-face activities according to what they felt was the most important for fostering a sense of virtual community. Data analysis revealed the majority of students revealed that they perceived a superior to significant sense of virtual community. ANOVA tests revealed that there was no significant difference between gender or grade level. Rankings of the virtual classroom and face-to-face activities were developed from the data. The rankings revealed that activities such as in-person field trips and gatherings, as well as virtual options such as emails and online live chats, foster a sense of virtual community for virtual students. [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:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Grade 4; Intermediate Grades; Elementary Education; Grade 5; Middle Schools; Grade 6
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A