Using a Social Learning Community to Actively Engage Students’ Participation in a Virtual Classroom

Fariel Mohan (University of Trinidad and Tobago, Trinidad and Tobago)
Copyright: © 2013 |Pages: 70
EISBN13: 9781466625808|DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-1933-3.ch003
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This case describes an experiment to motivate first year university students to use a virtual classroom through social and academic interactions. This approach augments the virtual classroom approach with concepts from social networking to create a social virtual classroom. The aim of the approach taken was to determine if social media included in a virtual classroom can actively engage students’ participation in social networking as well as be used as a tool for learning. Results from the experiment indicate that using a social virtual classroom encouraged social networking among the students. The social virtual classroom was also highly used for learning. The blend of social and academic in the virtual classroom engaged the students in creative ways that was not anticipated. A survey was conducted at the end and seventy-seven percent of the students agreed that the social aspect of the virtual classroom was intrinsically motivating.
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