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ERIC Number: EJ889335
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 34
ISSN: ISSN-1528-3518
Connecting Distance Learners and Their Mentors Using Blogs: The MentorBlog Project
Wheeler, Steve; Lambert-Heggs, Wendy
Quarterly Review of Distance Education, v10 n4 p323-331 2009
In this article we describe the MentorBlog project, which facilitated the mentoring of trainee teachers in the postcompulsory education sector through the use of blogs. In an experimental design, the study compared their experiences with students who received traditional mentoring. Blogs were used by the trainees to communicate with their mentors over the course of a complete academic term. The article highlights the importance of mentoring in the teacher education process, and argues that blogging can be a useful and viable alternative when students are not able to meet face-to-face with their mentors on a regular basis. A number of key blogging affordances are identified, including reflexivity, permanency, and immediacy, which can either encourage or undermine successful mentorial dialogue. We also identify dissonance as a barrier to full dialogue in mentoring and show how it can be a problem due to the archiving features on most blogs. The article concludes with some recommendations for the future wider deployment of blogs as mentorial tools for distance learners, and proposes an extension of the project to include the use of mobile phones as a route to providing "any time, any place" mentor support for nomadic students.
IAP - Information Age Publishing, Inc. P.O. Box 79049, Charlotte, NC 28271-7047. Tel: 704-752-9125; Fax: 704-752-9113; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)