TitelAnalysis of Emotional Communication Processes among Working Professionals within Communities of Learning
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsWatzek, V, Rehm, M, Mulder, RH
Conference NameEARLI 2015
LocationLimassol, Cyprus
KeywordsCommunity of Learning, computer supported collaborative learning, emotional communication, organisationales Lernen

Online Communities of Learning (CoL) have received a growing amount of attention in the context of Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning (CSCL). The process of connecting people via CoL builds on the use of technical media, e.g., asynchronous discussion forums. Online discussions are mainly fuelled by emotional support. Moreover, there is evidence that emotions have an impact on the individual learning processes. In order to emphasize the character of emotional communication processes in asynchronous learning environments, emotional threads, a newly developed and used method, has been used to analyse the dynamical structure of communication processes. Generally, each emotional thread involves at least two notes, is revealed in an online learning situation and has to be triggered by an external attribution. Previous research on this topic has focused on (higher) education and not yet on working professionals. We address this shortcoming by formulating the following research questions:
1. Is it possible to identify emotional threads in asynchronous computer-supported collaborative learning?
2. To what extend are emotional threads relevant to the learning processes of CoL among working professionals?
We collected data from an online training program (CoL = 25, n = 249), which aimed to enhance the knowledge and skills of a global organization’s staff, operating in the sector of economic development. Each CoL was centred on asynchronous discussion forums, where participants engaged in collaborative discussions of real-life tasks. Our preliminary findings include the identification of two task-directed emotional threads within one CoL.

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