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What is Instant Messaging System

Encyclopedia of Distance Learning, Second Edition
Communication service on the Internet that enables textual private chats with other individuals in real time.
Published in Chapter:
Informal Communication in Virtual Learning Environments
Werner Beuschel (University of Applied Sciences - Brandenburg, Germany), Birgit Gaiser (Knowledge Media Research Center - Teubingen, Germany), and Susanne Draheim (University of Applied Sciences - Brandenburg, Germany)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 5
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-198-8.ch166
Learning environments increasingly become more diverse by the use of information technology. Thereby, the share of face-to-face situations between students as well as between students and mentors becomes smaller, while the share of encounters in virtual space is growing larger. Thus, computer mediated communication (CMC) is growing in importance in all learning environments. Since standard learning environments involve both formal and informal communication, it seems reasonable to claim that without informal communication students and faculty would have difficulties in sustaining the learning processes. Beyond the ever-growing exchange of formal content, the opportunity of informal communication appears increasingly essential for the successful pursuit of online studies.
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