Facilitating online learning activities through the discussion board: a first year university students' perspective
by Tangikina Moimoi Steen
International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning (IJCEELL), Vol. 25, No. 1, 2015

Abstract: The discussion board as a learning tool has been used widely by educators to facilitate online learning. An internet survey of 109 indigenous and non-indigenous first year students at the University of South Australia was conducted to identify factors which encourage and discourage their use of the discussion board in a learning activity. The findings suggest that clarity of design, purpose and outcome of the learning activity is paramount to students' participation and engagement in the discussion board. Further, the role of the instructors and students must be clearly articulated from the start and throughout the learning activity. In particular, from the indigenous students' perspectives, they ranked highly the importance for instructors to understand the social and cultural aspects of their learning needs, which include developing and maintaining a sense of belonging to a learning community, building a good relationship with instructors and peers, and getting timely feedback from instructors.

Online publication date: Wed, 21-Jan-2015

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