Choosing Online Learning Communities or Collaborative Learning

Choosing Online Learning Communities or Collaborative Learning

Daniel Teghe (Central Queensland University, Australia) and Bruce Allen Knight (Central Queensland University, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-575-7.ch015
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Abstract

The adoption and innovative use of computer-mediated communication (CMC) technology can have positive outcomes for regional development (Ashford, 1999; Harris, 1999; Mitchell, 2003). Especially when it involves the use of online environments, CMC can lead to what Gillespie, Richardson, and Cornford (2001) refer to as the “death of distance,” and is likely to boost opportunities for growth in e-commerce, e-business, and e-learning in the regions. Although such growth depends on continuous learning and innovation (Rainnie, 2002), actual opportunities for learning and training can be affected by approaches to the provision of online learning that are unnecessarily rigid and inflexible. Online education and training methods that include strict participation requirements can have the effect of marginalizing and excluding those learners who cannot engage with inflexible and regimented learning contexts. This represents an important problem in regions, because of limited access to other learning contexts.

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