Collaborating with a (Non)Collaborator: Interpersonal Dynamics and Constructions of Identity in Graduate Online Learning

Collaborating with a (Non)Collaborator: Interpersonal Dynamics and Constructions of Identity in Graduate Online Learning

Carolyn Kristjánsson (Trinity Western University, Canada)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-100-3.ch409

Abstract

In a climate of increasing globalization with calls for the development of online learning communities that thrive on diversity, it is important to consider how diversity might influence the nature of interpersonal action and the dynamics of collaboration in computer-mediated education. This chapter considers the case of problematic collaboration in an online graduate program. Discourse analysis grounded in Systemic Functional Linguistics is applied to illustrate how various aspects of stakeholders’ identities can be traced in the discourse related to online collaborative processes. A model of situated multidimensional identity is used to consider how localized constructions of identity may be linked to broader frames of reference. Findings suggest that when stakeholders from a range of backgrounds are drawn together, online collaboration becomes a complex social practice.

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