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ERIC Number: EJ820129
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Feb
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 50
ISSN: ISSN-1551-2169
Teaching and Learning Online: Assessing the Effect of Gender Context on Active Learning
Pollock, Philip H.; Hamann, Kerstin; Wilson, Bruce M.
Journal of Political Science Education, v1 n1 p1-15 Feb 2005
Advocates of computer-mediated instruction have pointed to the potential of online teaching for facilitating students' active learning behavior. Small-group online discussion can have a role in meaningful student interaction. Yet, what is less known are the conditions under which students actually engage in interaction in online discussion groups rather than posting monologues. We refer to the literature that posits that gender is a variable affecting students' online discussion behavior. Existing literature suggests that the use of gender-specific language in online interactions is highly context-dependent. Of particular interest is the extent to which the manifestation of gender-typical rhetorical styles and student-student interaction are shaped by the gender composition of the online group. Our data, obtained from student postings to 50 discussion groups in three different upper-level comparative politics courses taught by two different instructors in multiple sections, permitted us to perform a content analysis of 1,908 messages containing 14,442 statements made by 453 students. In addition to suggesting overall differences and surprising similarities between male and female discussion styles, our preliminary findings point toward the productive effects of mixed-gender discussion groups. (Contains 2 figures, 3 tables, and 2 notes.)
Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A