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Collaborative Learning in a Learning Management System: A Qualitative Case Study of Work-Integrated E-Learning
University West, School of Business, Economics and IT, Divison of Informatics.
2018 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

With the increase in importance of a collaborative learning approach in the era of web 2.0 and the emergence of the social web, designing a convenient and adaptable LMS that can support this approach is becoming more challenging. This thesis has been conducted as a qualitative case study. The case study is represented by the "ProdEx" project in the Production Technology Center (PTC) at University West. This project focuses on collaboration and sharing knowledge between academia and industry, by offering Work Integrated e-Learning courses at university level to manufacturing industry companies. Within this environment, the aim of my study was to examine collaborative learning phenomena within an e-WIL environment. The research question of the study was: How does tailored LMS affect collaborative learning in an e-WIL course?

To answer this research question, I used interviews as the main research method to collect the empirical data. Thus, I conducted seven interviews with different stakeholders in the project, including the project coordinator, a professor who teaches advanced level courses, and one participant of the professor's courses. Moreover, I used an open-ended questionnaire to collect data from the former participants who couldn't attend face-to-face meetings. All the interviews have been transcribed and analyzed using content analysis method.

During the course of the research, a need to design a prototype artifact, i.e. a WordPress-LMS, arose. The purpose was to put the new collaborative features and the professor's requirements to the test in one of his e-WIL courses, "FEM1". I used the participatory design method to design the prototype with the professor, mainly because he is the primary user of the platform and has particular requirements of the system supporting his e-WIL courses.

The requirements are derived from his highly pedagogical and technological course demands.The theoretical framework of this study contains a sociocultural theory used to conceptualize the research. The literature of sociocultural theory and the studied phenomena, together with the empirical results, enabled me to answer the research question and draw the following conclusion, namely that the designed LMS can influence the collaborative learning phenomena by enabling collaborative features in the LMS and sustaining the practice community built through it, while t at the same time, enabling the implementation of e-WIL courses, expanding the audience of participants and maintaining the learning relationship with the e-WIL courses. The designed LMS achieves the above through the features implemented in it. These features have been designed, built and customized to adapt the particular situation of the professor, and to suit his high pedagogical and technological course demands.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. , p. 61
Keywords [en]
Collaborative Learning, Learning Management System (LMS), Work-Integrated e-Learning (e-WIL)
National Category
Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-12989Local ID: EXI802OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hv-12989DiVA, id: diva2:1253606
Subject / course
Informatics
Educational program
Informatik
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2018-10-10 Created: 2018-10-05 Last updated: 2018-10-10Bibliographically approved

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