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Title: Designing Reference Points in Animated Classroom Stories to Support Teacher Learners' Online Discussions
Authors: Chieu, Vu Minh
Herbst, Patricio
Issue Date: Jun-2013
Publisher: International Society of the Learning Sciences
Citation: Chieu, V. M. & Herbst, P. (2013). Designing Reference Points in Animated Classroom Stories to Support Teacher Learners' Online Discussions. In Rummel, N., Kapur, M., Nathan, M., & Puntambekar, S. (Eds.), To See the World and a Grain of Sand: Learning across Levels of Space, Time, and Scale: CSCL 2013 Conference Proceedings Volume 1 — Full Papers & Symposia (pp. 89-96). Madison, WI: International Society of the Learning Sciences.
Abstract: This paper investigates how critical events or reference points in animated classroom stories can support teacher learners' online discussions about their professional practice. Research has indicated positive impact of shared artifacts or reference objects such as video records of teaching practice on the quality of teachers' conversations in both face-to- face and online discussions. Our earlier studies also show that embedding animated classroom episodes as reference objects into virtual discussion spaces can help teachers produce highly meaningful and in-depth conversations about teaching practice. Yet, all moments in a video or animation are not created equal and it is important to understand whether particular moments (reference points) included in a single reference object attract more attention than others as subjects of conversation. While this issue has been studied in the context of analyzing face-to- face conversations among teachers, we have not come across studies that examine the connection between particular reference points and the quality of online postings referring to those. This paper reports on a preliminary study that indicates promising results of how reference points can help improve the quality of teachers' online discussions. For example, teachers made more evaluative comments and proposed more alternative moves of teaching when they referred to reference points than when they did not refer to reference points. This kind of studies are important because they can help the course designer better design or select shared artifacts to facilitate and stimulate group conversations.
Appears in Collections:CSCL 2013

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