Merhaba Misafir

Exploring community in discussion board activities


This study focuses on the best practice of building community in the online classroom, with a specific interest in how this best practice can be achieved through discussion activities. In particular, we investigate the relationship between the structure of discussion board activities and the extent of community that is developed within discussion threads. We define the important elements of discussion board structure to include: (1) the prompt (2) expectations and guidelines, (3) incentives for participation, (4) instructor facilitation and guidance, and (5) tone of interactions. Then, through an analytical coding of discussion board threads, we explore this relationship between structure and community building in three undergraduate online economics courses. We find that the nature and extent of community building within discussion board activities is largely determined by their structure. Additionally, we investigate whether student perceptions of community correlate with differences in the structure of discussion board activities. Our findings suggest a positive relationship between the optimality of discussion board structure and student perceptions of community. We conclude with a discussion of practical strategies for community building through discussion activities in the online classroom.

Yayınlandığı Kaynak : TOJDEL (The Online Journal of Distance Education and e-Learning)
  • Yıl : 2019
  • Cilt : 7
  • ISSN : 2147-6454
  • Sayı : 3
  • Sayfa Aralığı : 185-198
  • IO Kayıt No : 98541
  • Yayıncı : Sakarya Üniversitesi Yayınları