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Title: Exchanging ideas with peers in network-based classrooms: An aid or a pain?
Authors: Sengupta, S
Issue Date: 2001
Source: Language learning and technology, 2001, v. 5, no. 1, p. 103-134 How to cite?
Journal: Language Learning and Technology 
Abstract: Computer-mediated communication can be a powerful tool towards literacy development as its text-based nature supports sustained reflection on classroom exchanges. This exploratory study examines the nature of peer exchanges in two partially network-based classes and the conflicts learners face in this situation where all information is text-based and archived. The classes combined computermediated and face-to-face elements in teaching content courses to students completing a BA in Contemporary English Language. This paper provides a picture of how learners used the available technology to interact with peers and their comment on how this mode of delivery extended their traditional notions of learning. Data include archives of discussions, learning logs, the tasks completed, responses provided, and student interviews conducted at the end. The data were inductively analyzed to find emerging themes following a reiterative process of substantiating and elaborating the themes. A variety of responses was evident where students were using situationally-relevant language to interact with and learn from each other. The data indicates that students develop a sense of personal accountability arising from the high visibility on the Web which was seen as unique yet threatening component of this mode. The paper evaluates the powers of the Web in terms of students' experiences and comments.
ISSN: 1094-3501
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