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Learning as social practice online: how can meaningful dialogue be nurtured online in the spirit of learning as social practice?

Reference is made in Flexible Pedagogies: part-time learners and learning in higher education to a selection of case studies that illustrate how flexible pedagogies have been developed to support the needs of part-time learners.

This case study illustrates opportunities afforded by recent developments in technology for students to learn through this type of social practice without needing to attend campus or indeed even meet during their studies.

University of Wolverhampton

This exploratory study explored how meaningful dialogue can be nurtured online in the spirit of ‘learning as social practice’ in one module of an MA Education programme. The programme is a flexible part-time CPD award aimed at practitioners in any sector of education. The majority of participants are teachers in schools and colleges looking to extend their skills and understandings of education and learning. To increase the flexibility of the award two online modules were designed one of which was 'Learning as Social Practice Online'. This module is underpinned by the principle of activity-led learning (ALL). The module pace falls into three phases: Phase 1: Formative development (weeks 1-5); Phase 2: Summative development (weeks 6-9); Phase 3: Independent study leading to summative assignment submission (weeks?). The pace is controlled by three keynote video conferences (VCs) during a nine-week activity period followed by two weeks of independent study leading to final summative assignment submission. Participants engage in online tutor (OLT) led discussion and activity leading up to each VC. Participants work at a pace that suits them supported by online discussion in a 'Facebook' group (open only to participants) with the OLT and other participants. 'Wikispaces' is used to develop a 600-word formative assignment submitted in week five which is commented on by other participants and the OLT.

ptl_cs_u_of_wlv_social.pdf View Document

The materials published on this page were originally created by the Higher Education Academy.