Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 9

community of practice Related Abstracts

9 The Usefulness and Usability of a Linkedin Group for the Maintenance of a Community of Practice among Hand Surgeons Worldwide

Authors: Vaikunthan Rajaratnam

Abstract:

Maintaining continuous professional development among clinicians has been a challenge. Hand surgery is a unique speciality with the coming together of orthopaedics, plastics and trauma surgeons. The requirements for a team-based approach to care with the inclusion of other experts such as occupational, physiotherapist and orthotic and prosthetist provide the impetus for the creation of communities of practice. This study analysed the community of practice in hand surgery that was created through a social networking website for professionals. The main objectives were to discover the usefulness of this community of practice created in the platform of the group function of LinkedIn. The second objective was to determine the usability of this platform for the purposes of continuing professional development among members of this community of practice. The methodology used was one of mixed methods which included a quantitative analysis on the usefulness of the social network website as a community of practice, using the analytics provided by the LinkedIn platform. Further qualitative analysis was performed on the various postings that were generated by the community of practice within the social network website. This was augmented by a respondent driven survey conducted online to assess the usefulness of the platform for continuous professional development. A total of 31 respondents were involved in this study. This study has shown that it is possible to create an engaging and interactive community of practice among hand surgeons using the group function of this professional social networking website LinkedIn. Over three years the group has grown significantly with members from multiple regions and has produced engaging and interactive conversations online. From the results of the respondents’ survey, it can be concluded that there was satisfaction of the functionality and that it was an excellent platform for discussions and collaboration in the community of practice with a 69 % of satisfaction. Case-based discussions were the most useful functions of the community of practice. This platform usability was graded as excellent using the validated usability tool. This study has shown that the social networking site LinkedIn’s group function can be easily used as a community of practice effectively and provides convenience to professionals and has made an impact on their practice and better care for patients. It has also shown that this platform was easy to use and has a high level of usability for the average healthcare professional. This platform provided the improved connectivity among professionals involved in hand surgery care which allowed for the community to grow and with proper support and contribution of relevant material by members allowed for a safe environment for the exchange of knowledge and sharing of experience that is the foundation of a community practice.

Keywords: Social Media, lifelong learning, Online Community, Hand surgery, community of practice, LinkedIn, continuing professional development

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8 Development of Researcher Knowledge in Mathematics Education: Towards a Confluence Framework

Authors: Igor Kontorovich, Rina Zazkis

Abstract:

We present a framework of researcher knowledge ‎development in conducting a study in mathematics education. The key ‎components of the framework are: knowledge germane to conducting a ‎particular study, processes of knowledge accumulation, and catalyzing ‎filters that influence a researcher decision making. The components of ‎the framework originated from a confluence between constructs and ‎theories in Mathematics Education, Higher Education and Sociology. ‎Drawing on a self-reflective interview with a leading researcher in ‎mathematics education, professor Michèle Artigue, we illustrate how ‎the framework can be utilized in data analysis. Criteria for framework ‎evaluation are discussed. ‎

Keywords: Knowledge Development, community of practice, mathematics education research, researcher knowledge

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7 School Based Assessment Issues in Selected Malaysian Primary Schools

Authors: Nur Amalina Dayana Abd Aziz

Abstract:

Assessment is an integral part of teaching and learning in any syllabus in the world. Recently, a new assessment system, School-Based Assessment (SBA) was introduced and implemented in the Malaysian education system to promote a more holistic, integrated and balanced assessment system. This effort is part of the reformation made in the Government Transformation Plan (GTP) to produce a world-class human capital as we are reaching and achieving the Vision 2020 in the near future. However, this new change has raised awareness and concerns from teachers, students, parents and non-profit organizations on how the new assessment is to be implemented and how it is affecting the students and teachers particularly. Therefore, this paper aims to investigate the issues that teachers face in implementing SBA in primary schools, the measures taken to address the issues and to propose ways of managing school-based assessment. Five national primary schools focusing in the urban areas in the Selangor state are chosen for this study to carry out. Data for the study will be gathered from interviews with teachers from each school, surveys and classrooms observation will be conducted in each school, and relevant documents are collected from the selected schools. The findings of this study will present the current issues that teachers from various types of national primary schools are facing and what actions they took to overcome the problems in carrying out SBA. Suggestions on how to better manage school-based assessment for teachers are also provided in this paper.

Keywords: Curriculum, Managing Change, community of practice, school-based assessment

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6 Qualitative Study of Pre-Service Teachers' Imagined Professional World vs. Real Experiences of In-Service Teachers

Authors: Masood Monjezi

Abstract:

The English teachers’ pedagogical identity construction is the way teachers go through the process of becoming teachers and how they maintain their teaching selves. The pedagogical identity of teachers is influenced by several factors within the individual and the society. The purpose of this study was to compare the imagined social world of the pre-service teachers with the real experiences the in-service teachers had in the context of Iran to see how prepared the pre-service teachers are with a view to their identity being. This study used a qualitative approach to collection and analysis of the data. Structured and semi-structured interviews, focus groups and process logs were used to collect the data. Then, using open coding, the data were analyzed. The findings showed that the imagined world of the pre-service teachers partly corresponded with the real world experiences of the in-service teachers leaving the pre-service teachers unprepared for their real world teaching profession. The findings suggest that the current approaches to English teacher training are in need of modification to better prepare the pre-service teachers for the future that expects them.

Keywords: Identity, pre-service teachers, in-service teachers, community of practice, imagined professional world, real experiences

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5 The Triad Experience: Benefits and Drawbacks of the Paired Placement of Student Teachers in Physical Education

Authors: Carol Wilkinson, Keven Prusak, Todd Pennington

Abstract:

Traditional models of student teaching practices typically involve the placement of a student teacher with an experienced mentor teacher. However, due to the ever-decreasing number of quality placements, an alternative triad approach is the paired placement of student teachers with one mentor teacher in a community of practice. This study examined the paired-placement of student teachers in physical education to determine the benefits and drawbacks after a 14-week student teaching experience. PETE students (N = 22) at a university in the United States were assigned to work in a triad with a student teaching partner and a mentor teacher, making up eleven triads for the semester. The one exception was a pair that worked for seven weeks at an elementary school and then for seven weeks at a junior high school, thus having two mentor teachers and participating in two triads. A total of 12 mentor teachers participated in the study. All student teachers and mentor teachers volunteered and agreed to participate. The student teaching experience was structured so that students engaged in: (a) individual teaching (one teaching the lesson with the other observing), (b) co-planning, and (c) peer coaching. All students and mentor teachers were interviewed at the conclusion of the experience. Using interview data, field notes, and email response data, the qualitative data was analyzed using the constant comparative method. The benefits of the paired placement experience emerged into three categories (a) quality feedback, (b) support, and (c) collaboration. The drawbacks emerged into four categories (a) unrealistic experience, (b) laziness in preparation, (c) lack of quality feedback, and (d) personality mismatch. Recommendations include: providing in-service training prior to student teaching to optimize the triad experience, ongoing seminars throughout the experience specifically designed for triads, and a hybrid model of paired placement for the first half of student teaching followed by solo student teaching for the second half of the experience.

Keywords: Physical Education, community of practice, paired placement, student teaching

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4 Technological Tool-Use as an Online Learner Strategy in a Synchronous Speaking Task

Authors: J. Knight, E. Barberà

Abstract:

Language learning strategies have been defined as thoughts and actions, consciously chosen and operationalized by language learners, to help them in carrying out a multiplicity of tasks from the very outset of learning to the most advanced levels of target language performance. While research in the field of Second Language Acquisition has focused on ‘good’ language learners, the effectiveness of strategy-use and orchestration by effective learners in face-to-face classrooms much less research has attended to learner strategies in online contexts, particular strategies in relation to technological tool use which can be part of a task design. In addition, much research on learner strategies and strategy use has been explored focusing on cognitive, attitudinal and metacognitive behaviour with less research focusing on the social aspect of strategies. This study focuses on how learners mediate with a technological tool designed to support synchronous spoken interaction and how this shape their spoken interaction in the opening of their talk. A case study approach is used incorporating notions from communities of practice theory to analyse and understand learner strategies of dyads carrying out a role play task. The study employs analysis of transcripts of spoken interaction in the openings of the talk along with log files of tool use. The study draws on results of previous studies pertaining to the same tool as a form of triangulation. Findings show how learners gain pre-task planning time through technological tool control. The strategies involving learners’ choices to enter and exit the tool shape their spoken interaction qualitatively, with some cases demonstrating long silences whilst others appearing to start the pedagogical task immediately. Who/what learners orientate to in the openings of the talk: an audience (i.e. the teacher), each other and/or screen-based signifiers in the opening moments of the talk also becomes a focus. The study highlights how tool use as a social practice should be considered a learning strategy in online contexts whereby different usages may be understood in the light of the more usual asynchronous social practices of the online community. The teachers’ role in the community is also problematised as the evaluator of the practices of that community. Results are pertinent for task design for synchronous speaking tasks. The use of community of practice theory supports an understanding of strategy use that involves both metacognition alongside social context revealing how tool-use strategies may need to be orally (socially) negotiated by learners and may also differ from an online language community.

Keywords: Tool Use, community of practice, learner strategy, speaking task

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3 Potentiality of a Community of Practice between Public Schools and the Private Sector for Integrating Sustainable Development into the School Curriculum

Authors: Aiydh Aljeddani, Fran Martin

Abstract:

The critical time in which we live requires rethinking of many potential ways in order to make the concept of sustainability and its principles an integral part of our daily life. One of these potential approaches is how to attract community institutions, such as the private sector, to participate effectively in the sustainability industry by supporting public schools to fulfill their duties. A collaborative community of practice can support this purpose and can provide a flexible framework, which allows the members of the community to participate effectively. This study, conducted in Saudi Arabia, aimed to understand the process of a collaborative community of practice of involving the private sector as a member of this community to integrate the sustainability concept in school activities and projects. This study employed a qualitative methodology to understand this authentic and complex phenomenon. A case study approach, ethnography and some elements of action research were followed in this study. The methods of unstructured interviews, artifacts, observation, and teachers’ field notes were used to collect the data. The participants were three secondary teachers, twelve chief executive officers, and one school administrative officer. Certain contextual conditions, as shown by the data, should be taken into consideration when policy makers and school administrations in Saudi Arabia desire to integrate sustainability into school activities. The first of these was the acknowledgement of the valuable role of the members’ personality, efforts, abilities, and experiences, which played vital roles in integrating sustainability. Second, institutional culture, which was not expected to emerge as an important factor in this study, has a significant role in the integration of sustainability. Credibility among the members of the community towards the integration of the sustainability concept and its principles through school activities is another important condition. Fourth, some chief executive officers’ understanding of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) towards contribution to sustainability agenda was shallow and limited and this could impede the successful integration of sustainability. Fifth, a shared understanding between the members of the community about integrating sustainability was a vital condition in the integration process. The study also revealed that the integration of sustainability could not be an ongoing process if implemented in isolation of the other community institutions such as the private sector. The study finally offers a number of recommendations to improve on the current practices and suggests areas for further studies.

Keywords: Sustainable Development, private sector, public schools, community of practice

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2 Online Faculty Professional Development: An Approach to the Design Process

Authors: Marie Bountrogianni, Leonora Zefi, Krystle Phirangee, Naza Djafarova

Abstract:

Faculty development is critical for any institution as it impacts students’ learning experiences and faculty performance with regards to course delivery. With that in mind, The Chang School at Ryerson University embarked on an initiative to develop a comprehensive, relevant faculty development program for online faculty and instructors. Teaching Adult Learners Online (TALO) is a professional development program designed to build capacity among online teaching faculty to enhance communication/facilitation skills for online instruction and establish a Community of Practice to allow for opportunities for online faculty to network and exchange ideas and experiences. TALO is comprised of four online modules and each module provides three hours of learning materials. The topics focus on online teaching and learning experience, principles and practices, opportunities and challenges in online assessments as well as course design and development. TALO offers a unique experience for online instructors who are placed in the role of a student and an instructor through interactivities involving discussions, hands-on assignments, peer mentoring while experimenting with technological tools available for their online teaching. Through exchanges and informal peer mentoring, a small interdisciplinary community of practice has started to take shape. Successful participants have to meet four requirements for completion: i) participate actively in online discussions and activities, ii) develop a communication plan for the course they are teaching, iii) design one learning activity/or media component, iv) design one online learning module. This study adopted a mixed methods exploratory sequential design. For the qualitative phase of this study, a thorough literature review was conducted on what constitutes effective faculty development programs. Based on that review, the design team identified desired competencies for online teaching/facilitation and course design. Once the competencies were identified, a focus group interview with The Chang School teaching community was conducted as a needs assessment and to validate the competencies. In the quantitative phase, questionnaires were distributed to instructors and faculty after the program was launched to continue ongoing evaluation and revisions, in hopes of further improving the program to meet the teaching community’s needs. Four faculty members participated in a one-hour focus group interview. Major findings from the focus group interview revealed that for the training program, faculty wanted i) to better engage students online, ii) to enhance their online teaching with specific strategies, iii) to explore different ways to assess students online. 91 faculty members completed the questionnaire in which findings indicated that: i) the majority of faculty stated that they gained the necessary skills to demonstrate instructor presence through communication and use of technological tools provided, ii) increased faculty confidence with course management strategies, iii) learning from peers is most effective – the Community of Practice is strengthened and valued even more as program alumni become facilitators. Although this professional development program is not mandatory for online instructors, since its launch in Fall 2014, over 152 online instructors have successfully completed the program. A Community of Practice emerged as a result of the program and participants continue to exchange thoughts and ideas about online teaching and learning.

Keywords: Faculty development, Inclusive Design, community of practice, customized

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1 CoP-Networks: Virtual Spaces for New Faculty’s Professional Development in the 21st Higher Education

Authors: Eman Abukhousa, Marwan Z. Bataineh

Abstract:

The 21st century higher education and globalization challenge new faculty members to build effective professional networks and partnership with industry in order to accelerate their growth and success. This creates the need for community of practice (CoP)-oriented development approaches that focus on cognitive apprenticeship while considering individual predisposition and future career needs. This work adopts data mining, clustering analysis, and social networking technologies to present the CoP-Network as a virtual space that connects together similar career-aspiration individuals who are socially influenced to join and engage in a process for domain-related knowledge and practice acquisitions. The CoP-Network model can be integrated into higher education to extend traditional graduate and professional development programs.

Keywords: Higher Education, Data Mining, Professional Development, Social Network, Social influence, community of practice, clustering analysis, new faculty challenges

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