Title: The Project Method e-course: the use of tools towards the evolution of the Greek teachers' online community

Authors: Marianna Vivitsou, Niki Lambropoulos, Dimitris Konetas, Michael Paraskevas, Evangelos Grigoropoulos

Addresses: Department of Applied Sciences of Education,University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 9, FI-00014, Helsinki, Finland. ' Centre for Interactive Systems Engineering, London South Bank University, 103 Borough Rd, London, SE1 0AA, UK. ' ICT and Distance Education Laboratory, University of Ioannina, 45110, University of Ioannina Campus, Ioannina, Greece. ' Research and Academic Computer Technology Institute, Kazantzaki Str., University of Patras Campus, GR-26500, Patras, Greece. ' University of Macedonia, 156 Egnatias Str., 54006, Thessaloniki, Greece

Abstract: The second web generation (Web 2.0) opens up new perspectives for community building through communication and collaboration. Open Source Software (OSS) have contributed to the viability of educational courses and extended the potential of online learning. Yet, if the aim is to provide users with a dynamic context allowing collective intelligence to emerge, not only is the development of appropriate learning environments required but also the integration of a flexible pedagogical scenario. For the purposes of this paper, the authors focus on a pilot e-course implemented on the Greek teachers| national intranet e-learning platform aiming to provide evidence that the transition from an information retrieval situation to a social learning situation requires the mediation of improved OS systems. In these, design should aim for the encouragement of the users| cognitive and social presence so that knowledge can be constructed through collaboration and critical reflection within an active online community.

Keywords: collaborative learning; critical thinking; Web 2.0; open source software; OSS; Moodle; communities of practice; online communities; web based communities; Greece; e-learning; online learning; virtual communities; social learning; intranet; Greek teachers; collaboration; critical reflection.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCEELL.2008.016074

International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning, 2008 Vol.18 No.1, pp.26 - 39

Available online: 05 Dec 2007 *

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