Integrating E-Learning 2.0 into Online Courses

Integrating E-Learning 2.0 into Online Courses

Steve Chi-Yin Yuen
DOI: 10.4018/ijicte.2014010105
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This paper provides an overview of e-learning 2.0 concepts and presents a case study that involves the design, development, and teaching of two online courses based on e-learning 2.0 concepts. The design and the construction of e-learning 2.0 courses, and their effects on the students’ learning experience are examined. In addition, students’ preferred Web 2.0 tools are included, as well as their opinions regarding the e-learning 2.0 instructional approach.
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E-Learning 2.0

The term e-learning describes all forms of electronically supported or enhanced teaching and learning. Since its conception, the traditional model of e-learning was one in which learning content was provided by courseware authors, structured into courses through a learning management system (LMS), and ultimately consumed by students. Unfortunately, the traditional approach to e-learning, too often driven by the needs of educational institutions, often does little to meet the needs of individual learners; in consequence, the early promises enmeshed in the idea of e-learning have not yet been fully realized (O’hear, 2006).

Fortunately, educators’ continuing exploration of the potential of e-learning, together with the widespread proliferation of Web 2.0 applications, has now created an opportunity for educational institutions to extend the possibilities of e-learning. Over the past several years a new model of e-learning has begun to emerge. E-learning, in combination with the Social Web, or Web 2.0, has resulted in, the second generation of e-learning: e-learning 2.0, which uses social media or Web 2.0 tools to enhance traditional e-learning environments (Ghali & Cristea, 2009). The term e-learning 2.0 was coined by Stephen Downes (2005) in response to a critical assessment of the traditional vision of e-learning and its ‘transmission of knowledge’ paradigm (Calvani, Bonaiuti, & Fini, 2008). In contrast, e-learning 2.0 takes a ‘small pieces, loosely joined’ approach that combines the use of discrete but complementary tools and Web services - such as blogs, Wikis, and other social software - to support the creation of ad-hoc learning communities (O’hear, 2006).

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