06 SES 02, Online Communities in Education: Teaching, Learning and OER
The Internet provides teachers with a social space to interact and access resources in the form of either knowledge content or knowledgeable people outside their school (Fox, Wilson & Deany, 2011). Within the last decade, the Internet has change along with the ways digital natives are making use of it: there has been a clear move from passive browsing of static Web pages towards active engagement of Internet users in digital creation, sharing and remixing of online content. According to Shuck (2003) the online social networks are directed to lifelong learners such as teachers, who need continuous support and guidance to develop themselves both personally and professionally. Setting up a new online network for teachers is easy thing to do, but it can quickly fade out if the members have no habits to share, reflect and collaborate online. Although today there are many teachers who spontaneously register themselves to different social networks and portals, try out new technologies in their work and use digital tools daily in their teaching, the majority of teachers are still not immersed into digital culture.
In this paper we argue that there is need for step-by-step orchestration of the shift towards digital culture among teachers, and this can be done by immersing student teachers into technology-rich environment throughout the teacher education programme. In Estonia, only a minority of teachers has shaped the habit to use open learning environment for student-centered learning. We propose the design idea of the community-based system, which would scaffold, guide and support the teachers who does not feel themselves comfortable with new technologies. Scaffolding, as defined by Sawyer (2006) is traditionally the support given during the learning process, which is tailored to the needs of the student with the intention of helping the student achieve his/her learning goals. In the settings of this paper it means that teachers are supported to use the system in their teaching until they have developed the competencies of using technology in their teaching process and they are ready to use open technologies, which are less regulated and controlled. In the first place teachers should be led to the system and the system should provide different technological possibilities to scaffold their usage of the system. We propose that in that phase those teachers need a little bit more controlled, guided, partially closed community-based system, where learning and teaching happens in-controlled settings.
Several countries have tried to develop similar systems, for instance in the United Kingdom there is a space for teachers’ communities of practices - Online Communities for Educators. There are several learning resources repositories and again MESH from UK is one of the relevant due its classification possibilities of the content by making the management and accessibility of the content easier for the teachers. In our design research we combine the possibilities of the British software for teachers and propose that there is a need for the shared space which involves the community-based learning and sharing, managing and classifying the learning materials, but in a little bit controlled way. Additionally there is need for supporting technologically the competence-based professional development of teachers.
Fox A., Wilson E., & Deaney R. (2011). Beginning Teachers’ Workplace Experiences: Perceptions of and Use of Support. Vocations and Learning, 1-24. doi: 10.1007/s12186- 010-9046-1 Sawyer, R.K. (2006). The Cambridge Handbook of the Learning Sciences. Cambridge University Press, New York Schuck S. (2003). Getting help from the outside: developing a support network for beginning teachers, The Journal of Educational Enquiry, 4(1).
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
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