Sociocultural factors and social presence in an online learning environment

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In a computer supported learning environment both in the synchronous and asynchronous mode, interaction is a prerequisite to facilitate learning. Hence to facilitate effective interaction, a good working team of learners and instructors is important. For this to happen, social presence is necessary to create sound social interaction for instructional effectiveness. Social presence is the ability of the instructors and learners to project their physical and emotional presence (Mardziah H. Abdullah (2004). However, the level of social presence in a virtual learning environment depends on the students' and instructors' sociocultural background. The sociocultural theory in language learning itself emphasizes the roles of interpersonal interaction rather than intrapersonal interaction. This article discusses some findings of a study on a computer supported collaborative learning environment. It shows how distance learners at an institution of higher learning in Malaysia responded to a questionnaire on the issues of social presence. The postings in the learner management system (LMS) and data from focus-group interviews were also analysed and discussed. The findings share some positive responses towards social presence in a virtual learning environment and calls for a more in-depth inquiry that will contribute to the literature on online collaborative learning in the Malaysian context.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-213
Number of pages13
JournalGEMA Online Journal of Language Studies
Volume12
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2012

Fingerprint

sociocultural factors
learning environment
interaction
instructor
learning
Malaysia
Instructor
Learning Environment
Interaction
Online Learning
questionnaire
ability
interview
language
management
Collaborative Learning
Virtual Learning Environment
Group
student

Keywords

  • Computer supported learning environment
  • Distance learning
  • Learner management system
  • Social presence
  • Sociocultural factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Literature and Literary Theory
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

Cite this

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title = "Sociocultural factors and social presence in an online learning environment",
abstract = "In a computer supported learning environment both in the synchronous and asynchronous mode, interaction is a prerequisite to facilitate learning. Hence to facilitate effective interaction, a good working team of learners and instructors is important. For this to happen, social presence is necessary to create sound social interaction for instructional effectiveness. Social presence is the ability of the instructors and learners to project their physical and emotional presence (Mardziah H. Abdullah (2004). However, the level of social presence in a virtual learning environment depends on the students' and instructors' sociocultural background. The sociocultural theory in language learning itself emphasizes the roles of interpersonal interaction rather than intrapersonal interaction. This article discusses some findings of a study on a computer supported collaborative learning environment. It shows how distance learners at an institution of higher learning in Malaysia responded to a questionnaire on the issues of social presence. The postings in the learner management system (LMS) and data from focus-group interviews were also analysed and discussed. The findings share some positive responses towards social presence in a virtual learning environment and calls for a more in-depth inquiry that will contribute to the literature on online collaborative learning in the Malaysian context.",
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AB - In a computer supported learning environment both in the synchronous and asynchronous mode, interaction is a prerequisite to facilitate learning. Hence to facilitate effective interaction, a good working team of learners and instructors is important. For this to happen, social presence is necessary to create sound social interaction for instructional effectiveness. Social presence is the ability of the instructors and learners to project their physical and emotional presence (Mardziah H. Abdullah (2004). However, the level of social presence in a virtual learning environment depends on the students' and instructors' sociocultural background. The sociocultural theory in language learning itself emphasizes the roles of interpersonal interaction rather than intrapersonal interaction. This article discusses some findings of a study on a computer supported collaborative learning environment. It shows how distance learners at an institution of higher learning in Malaysia responded to a questionnaire on the issues of social presence. The postings in the learner management system (LMS) and data from focus-group interviews were also analysed and discussed. The findings share some positive responses towards social presence in a virtual learning environment and calls for a more in-depth inquiry that will contribute to the literature on online collaborative learning in the Malaysian context.

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