Title: Research on the relationship between positions in a social network and knowledge building of a virtual community for teachers

Authors: Xingbao Li; Xinhong Li

Addresses: School of Information Technology and Communication, QuFu Normal University, No.80, North Yantai Road, Rizhao, Shandong, China ' School of Information Technology and Communication, QuFu Normal University, No.80, North Yantai Road, Rizhao, Shandong, China

Abstract: The virtual community becomes a new place for teachers to acquire knowledge and a new way to exchange and discuss educational issues. The study uses three research methods, social network analysis, content analysis and statistical analysis respectively, to analyse the social network location of members in a virtual community, and compares characteristics of knowledge building of community members in different network locations. It explores the relationship between positions in the social network and knowledge building of the virtual community for teachers. The results show that the members of teachers' virtual community form the core - semi-core - periphery structure. Also, the members of the community in different social network locations have significant distinctions in knowledge building.

Keywords: virtual communities; social network locations; knowledge construction; social networks; teachers; online communities; web based communities; educational issues; discussion; information exchange; social network analysis; SNA; content analysis; statistical analysis.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCEELL.2013.055410

International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning, 2013 Vol.23 No.3/4, pp.282 - 299

Received: 08 Nov 2012
Accepted: 10 Feb 2013

Published online: 27 Jul 2013 *

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