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ERIC Number: EJ981799
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 27
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 56
ISSN: ISSN-1499-6677
Perspectives on the Use of "Anonymous" Discussion Forums in Undergraduate Education Courses
Bowen, G. Michael; Farmer, Robert; Arsenault, Nicole
Canadian Journal of Learning and Technology, v38 n2 Sum 2012
This paper theorizes issues involved with conflicts between participation in on-line settings and real-world social commitments, such as has recently happened in schools with students using public discussion forums for classes. We problematize how real-world social commitments negatively affect participation in online learning environments frequently used in classrooms. Drawing on interviews with, observations by, and written submissions from our students who participated in "hybrid" courses using an approach where identity was concealed in online discussions from other class participants (but not from the instructors), we discuss implications of this issue for evaluating forum submissions by students. Our analysis uses a cultural-historical activity theory framework to conceptualize implications from this "partially anonymous" forum approach and the resultant changes in participation in the learning environment. (Contains 4 figures.)
Canadian Network for Innovation in Education. 260 Dalhousie Street Suite 204, Ottawa, ON K1N 7E4, Canada. Tel: 613-241-0018; Fax: 613-241-0019; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada