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The Nature and Purpose of Online Discourse: A Brief Synthesis of Current Research as Related to The WEB Project
Article

, RMC Research Corporation, United States

IJET Volume 6, Number 1, ISSN 1077-9124 Publisher: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE), Chesapeake, VA

Abstract

Emerging technologies such as the Internet, the World Wide Web (WWW), computer-mediated communication (CMC) are being discussed around the world by teachers, administrators, parents, researchers, academics, and technology planners. The WEB Project (http://www.webproject.org) is beginning to show what is possible when telecommunications links participating schools and initiatives with the community-at-large. It serves as an edu-cational environment for student inquiry and expression, a medi-um for presenting and assessing student work, a virtual faculty room for professional discussions, and a forum for civic dis-course. Through its intensive use of the Internet, the WWW, and the WEB Exchange, the project has been supporting ongoing, public dialogue for the past three years. This innovative project introduces several questions regarding the motives, the impacts, and the activities associated with com-puter- mediated communication (CMC). This innovative project raises many interesting questions. Why engage in online conver-sations? What is the nature of mediated discourse? What are its various forms? What are the factors that facilitate or impede it? How does the technology itself interact with different learner characteristics, thereby resulting in different learner outcomes than traditional, face-to-face conversation? Finally, what are the implications for changing roles of students, teachers, experts, and novices as they carry out collaborative inquiry, civic dis-course, and design conversations in a mediated environment? These are areas that will be explored in this paper.

Citation

Sherry, L. (2000). The Nature and Purpose of Online Discourse: A Brief Synthesis of Current Research as Related to The WEB Project. International Journal of Educational Telecommunications, 6(1), 19-51. Charlottesville, VA: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved August 20, 2019 from .

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