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Session Overview
Session
PAP-14: Collaborative Learning
Time: Wednesday, 29/Aug/2012: 3:30pm - 5:00pm
Session Chair: Karen Kimmel, RWTH Aachen
Location: 454
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Presentations

Emotion regulation in online assessment-motivated collaborative learning

Ana Remesal

Universidad de Barcelona, Spain

This study presents the analysis of the emotions appearing in assessment-motivated collaborative online learning. The connection between emotions and learning has been studied in the last decades mostly related to assessment situations. These previous works, however, do not study the online context. In contrast, pioneer studies of online-emotions do not focus on assessment; actually, generally speaking they rarely consider learning situations at all. This study addresses both shortcomings using the concept of distributed emotion. A case study is presented for which 34 teacher-students and their instructor spontaneously established class norms of motivated collaborative online learning which took place in an online forum within the LMS Moodle. The interaction of participants in the virtual space is analyzed from a mixed approach. Four different techniques of analysis were applied: analysis of individual participation, chronological structural analysis, content analysis of forum interaction, and discursive analysis of the devices of emotional communication that the participants develop in the joint activity. Results of the study point to different elements that might foster the emotional processes shared in the virtual space. The emergence of ‘emotional roles’ in the group -both positive and negative- helps the participants to move forward in the learning process. This study is a first brick stone towards the understanding of distributed emotional processes in the context of virtual learning, particularly of those emotions related to the assessment of learning. This work, hence, contributes to the better global understanding of online learning situations.

Motivational regulation in small group work: looking for balance

Ana Remesal1, Thomas Martens2

1Universidad de Barcelona, Spain; 2DIPF, Germany

This study departs from a sociocultural comprehension of motivational phenomena during the learning process. We understand that the individuals’ inner activity cannot be extracted from the actual context of interaction, if we intend to find ways of improvement of motivational processes, so that dropouts are minimised. We present an innovative proposal designed for improving collaborative work competence in teacher education. The proposal grounds on enhancing the individual as well as the group awareness of motivational processes. For such purpose a particular online version of a motivational questionnaire was applied (QWIGI), which provided the participants with visual feedback of their own motivational processes in contrast with the small group to which they belonged. The study is designed with a mixed-method approach. Quantitative results of the study have been presented previously, so the main goal of this paper is to compare and contrast the quantitative results of the study with interpretive results of qualitative data, such as open evaluation questionnaires, group self-reports, and interactional data in online forums. The course was developed with a problem-based learning methodology, which challenged the students in the need of organising their own collaborative learning strategies. The interpretive analysis allowed the identification of different working cultures that were either productive or unproductive in terms of maintaining the group members’ motivation in balance and their basic psychological needs satisfied. Particular differences were found with respect to the use of the online tools the students were offered to use at free choice.

Emotions and group work: Insights from an appraisal-oriented perspective

Karen Kimmel, Marold Wosnitza

RWTH Aachen, Germany

Small group work is common practice in higher education. Yet, research on students’ emotions related to group work still seems relatively scarce. Particularly the interplay between students’ subjective appraisals of a group task and their implications for students’ emotional experiences of this task seems still not well understood. This paper provides a first attempt to systematically disentangle the relationship between individual differences in group work appraisals and arising emotions in the context of a real-life group assignment. Beginning and end questionnaires of 338 teacher education students, who completed a mandatory, assessed group assignment, were used to measure students’ multi-dimensional group work appraisals and emotional experiences. The latter were measured using a newly developed instrument. Findings showed that individual differences in emotions emerge as a function of individualised appraisal processes and provided support for systematically treating students’ group work experiences as multi-dimensional as each appraisal dimension has unique and distinct implications for students’ emotional experiences. To conclude, this study contributes to our understanding of students’ emotional experiences of group work and highlights the usefulness of appraisal theory as a valuable theoretical lens for examining emotions in the context of real-life group assignments. Furthermore, research of this kind has the potential to provide valuable insights into the design and implementation of group tasks that increase the likelihood of eliciting positive emotions and rewarding learning experiences and, ultimately, may offer helpful starting points for the enhancement of educational practice.

Motivating academic communities of practice to knowledge sharing: Participants’ sense of community

Nicolae Nistor1,2, Ionut Dorin Stanciu3

1Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Germany; 2Hiroshima University, Japan; 3Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania

Sense of community (SoC) plays in communities of practice (CoP) the role that group cohesion plays in small groups, i.e. both motivate participants to share knowledge. However, empirical evidence of relationships between SoC and other CoP characteristics is still scarce. A correlation study among German and Romanian scholars (N = 128) aims at identifying predictors and effects of SoC in academic CoP. As a result, a conceptual model is proposed, according to which CoP members’ interpersonal knowledge appears to be the strongest predictor of SoC and of knowledge sharing acceptance. Further, SoC significantly mediates the effect of time and centrality in CoP on knowledge sharing acceptance. Participants’ nationality displayed no moderating effects. The significance of the study resides in the explanation of a relatively large part of the variance of SoC (27%) and of knowledge sharing acceptance (33%) by connecting SoC with CoP attributes. Methodologically, it applies social network analysis to measure centrality in CoP, which has been seldom done in previous research. Finally, the study contributes to the validation of SoC conceptualization and measurement in face-to-face CoP, and in two different European cultures. For educational practice, the study suggests that interpersonal knowledge may be a major factor of knowledge sharing motivation in academic CoP.


 
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