A content analytic comparison of learning processes in online and face-to-face case study discussions

Robert Heckman, Hala Annabi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

74 Scopus citations

Abstract

While much research has shown that asynchronous learning networks (ALNs) can produce learning equivalent to face-to-face (FTP) classrooms, there has been little research that explicitly explores similarities and differences between the learning processes that occur in ALN and FTF activities. This study used a content analytic framework (derived primarily from previous work of Anderson, Archer, Garrison, and Rourke) to analyze transcripts from eight case study discussions, four FTP and four ALN. While previous authors developed a model that studies cognitive, social, and teaching processe in ALN discussions, the current scheme also considers characteristics of the discourse process. The findings provide evidence that ALNs generate high levels of cognitive activity, at least equal to, and i some cases superior to, the cognitive processes in the FTP classroom. The findings also suggest that students assume some aspects of the teacher's role in ALNs, and that student-to-student interactions contain a greater proportion of high-level cognitive indicators than do student-to-teacher interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number7
JournalJournal of Computer-Mediated Communication
Volume10
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Networks and Communications

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