***** To join INSNA, visit http://www.sfu.ca/~insna/ *****
As Judy Weedman has pointed out, this is indeed the area I work in. I've
been exploring the social networks of online learning communities, and
more recently, of learning networks of researchers on interdisciplinary
teams. The former are published, the latter 'in progress', although one
paper on learning networks was given at Sunbelt in 2002 (with Doug
The more comprehensive paper on social networks and learning networks is
the chapter in Building Virtual Communities (a good book overall!) and the
one most relevant re learning communities and CoPs. The other two papers
report on studies of the networks of distance learners, with the 2002
paper advocating a theory of the way different media differentially
support strong and weak tie networks (which, I believe, reconciles some of
the problems associated with the mixed results found when sticking with
the 'media richness' approach).
I am quite willing to share with you where I am in the work on the
learning networks of researchers. We can discuss that off-list if you
like. You might also see what Scott Poole is doing as well. He and a
co-author presented on learning networks at the HICSS conference this
Haythornthwaite, C. (2002). Building social networks via computer
networks: Creating and sustaining distributed learning communities. In
K.A. Renninger & W. Shumar, Building Virtual Communities: Learning and
Change in Cyberspace (pp.159-190). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University
Haythornthwaite, C. (2001). Exploring multiplexity: Social network
structures in a computer-supported distance learning class. The
Information Society, 17(3), 211-226.
Haythornthwaite, C. (2002). Strong, weak and latent ties and the impact
of new media. The Information Society, 18(5), 1-17.
Graduate School of Library and Information Science
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Rogerio DePaula" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Monday, March 17, 2003 12:41 PM
> Subject: ... and do social networks learn?
> > ***** To join INSNA, visit http://www.sfu.ca/~insna/ *****
> > Dear all,
> > I've been exploring the use of computer supported social networks to
> > help special education professionals to receive and give professional
> > and personal support as means to foster teacher professional
> > development.
> > Most of the approaches have instead focused on the design for
> > communities of practice as it seems to be an effective learning model
> > (Lave's LPP), although there is little evidence that CofP (as defined
> > by Lave and Wenger) actually takes place in these online environments.
> > I have been comparing this two approaches (namely, social networks and
> > communities of practice) based on the notion of community structures
> > and the kinds of interactions. However, I would like to be able to
> > compare them in terms of learning communities.
> > I wonder then whether there is any work on the learning aspects of
> > social networks, e.g. how do people learn in their social networks, or
> > simply whether SN can be thought of as a learning community, or
> > community of learners. Finally, is there any model for learning in
> > social networks?
> > Any reference or comment would be greatly appreciated.
> > Thank you in advance,
> > Rogerio.
> > _____________________________________________________________________
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