Strategies for Creating Community in a Graduate Education Online Program

Silvers, Penny; O'Connell, Jody; Fewell, Martha
March 2007
Journal of Computing in Teacher Education;Spring2007, Vol. 23 Issue 3, p81
Academic Journal
This article describes the practical application of social learning theory to build and sustain community in an asynchronous online learning environment. It presents ways that community-building can occur in a graduate online education program through the shared meaning-making processes occurring among students within and across interdisciplinary online courses as communities of practice emerge. Three professors share their experiences and strategies for developing, teaching, reflecting, and learning about creating communities of practice. Strategies include using interactive learning experiences, flexible grouping, extended online discussions, e-mail and journaling, video, digital storytelling, and power point presentations. Examples of online discussions show how student learning is situated in the group interactions revealing shared values, beliefs and practices generated within the online community.


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