Title: Developing learning profiles for web-based communities: towards an interactions-oriented model

Authors: Philip Bonanno

Addresses: Programme in Educational Technology and Flexible Learning, Department of Primary Education, Faculty of Education, University of Malta, Malta

Abstract: An interactions-oriented model is proposed for integrating assessment of individual cognitive and affective activity with distributed cognition in an attempt to identify typologies of interactions in web-based communities along three dimensions: domain content, technological competence and social interactions. Metacognition is discussed for each dimension within a pedagogical framework involving three levels of learning: acquisition, participation and mediational approaches, each level seen as satisfying the underlying psychological needs, specifically the need for competence, relatedness, affiliation or self-actualisation, respectively. Social interactions within this pedagogical framework are organised into task- and person-oriented. Task-oriented interactions include those related to gaining competence at the cognitive and metacognitive levels. Person-oriented interactions refer to typologies of social interactions that lead to impression formation, mentalising, imitation and social metacognitive activity. The use of interaction protocols is proposed as a methodology for capturing patterns of interactions that will serve as community learning profiles. Comparing such profiles will identify ||differences in patterns of interactions||. The concluding discussion outlines the pedagogical implications in relation to designing and managing web-based communities.

Keywords: learning communities; collaborative learning; technology intensive learning; individual differences; learning differences; metacognition; web-based communities; domain content; technological competence; social interaction; online learning; pedagogical framework.

DOI: 10.1504/IJWBC.2005.006935

International Journal of Web Based Communities, 2005 Vol.1 No.3, pp.382 - 395

Published online: 25 Apr 2005 *

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