Commenced in January 2007
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Interactive Effects in Blended Learning Mode: Exploring Hybrid Data Sources and Iterative Linkages

Authors: Hock Chuan, Lim


This paper presents an approach for identifying interactive effects using Network Science (NS) supported by Social Network Analysis (SNA) techniques. Based on general observations that learning processes and behaviors are shaped by the social relationships and influenced by learning environment, the central idea was to understand both the human and non-human interactive effects for a blended learning mode of delivery of computer science modules. Important findings include (a) the importance of non-human nodes to influence the centrality and transfer; (b) the degree of non-human and human connectivity impacts learning. This project reveals that the NS pattern and connectivity as measured by node relationships offer alternative approach for hypothesis generation and design of qualitative data collection. An iterative process further reinforces the analysis, whereas the experimental simulation option itself is an interesting alternative option, a hybrid combination of both experimental simulation and qualitative data collection presents itself as a promising and viable means to study complex scenario such as blended learning delivery mode. The primary value of this paper lies in the design of the approach for studying interactive effects of human (social nodes) and non-human (learning/study environment, Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) infrastructures nodes) components. In conclusion, this project adds to the understanding and the use of SNA to model and study interactive effects in blended social learning.

Keywords: Blended learning, network science, social learning, social network analysis, study environment.

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