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Interactions Online

Interactions Online
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Author(s): Susan Wegmann (University of Central Florida, USA)
Copyright: 2009
Pages: 9
Source title: Encyclopedia of Distance Learning, Second Edition
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Patricia L. Rogers (Bemidji State University, USA), Gary A. Berg (California State University Channel Islands (Retired), USA), Judith V. Boettcher (Designing for Learning, USA), Caroline Howard (HC Consulting, USA), Lorraine Justice (Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong) and Karen D. Schenk (K. D. Schenk and Associates Consulting, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-198-8.ch180

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Abstract

Success in online courses depends on quality interactions (Li & Akins, 2005; Shovein, Huston, Fox, & Damazo, 2005; Vrasidas, 2002). Interaction is “a continually emerging process, as communication in its most inclusive sense” (Simpson & Galbo, 1986). Pena-Shaff, Altman, and Stephenson (2005) found that students who interact more in online classes tend to feel a greater amount of satisfaction and even engage more deeply in course content. In fact, recent studies have shown that the most efficient computer-mediated learning occurs when teachers and students assume a connected stance (Wegmann, 2006; Wegmann & Mc- Cauley, 2007), or one in which students and teachers participate in the following types of behaviors online: initiate personally meaningful questions about the text, wonder, or initiate unique topics for discussion. The following reports on one study that analyzed students’ discussion board interactions, surveys of students’ perceptions, and e-mail interviews of selected participants. Following is a discussion of three areas of literature pertinent to the study: nature of interactions, computer-mediated communication, reading and writing theory.

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