The Team Balancing Act - Enhancing Knowledge-building Activity in On-Line Learning Communities

Roberts, Alan G. & Nason, Rodney A. (2003) The Team Balancing Act - Enhancing Knowledge-building Activity in On-Line Learning Communities. In Joint AARE/NZARE Conference, December 2003, Auckland.


Online learning in the university sector is a given. Constructivist views of learning (often team based) and the notion of knowledge-building, mediated through the use of ICTs seemingly address many of the imperatives to equip individuals for emergent knowledge-age work practice. While teamwork has many perceived advantages, teams also inexplicably fail despite the apparent quality of the participants. Teams are successful when members address what is a relatively narrow range of actions. However, even within this limited range of actions individuals demonstrate definite preferences towards certain activities and roles. This paper reports on the findings from a study that investigated if knowledge-building activity can be enhanced in tertiary education CSCL environments through the use of groups balanced by Team Role Preference (Margerison & McCann, 1995, 1998). The study found that higher quality knowledge-building activity was more likely to occur in balanced groups than in random groups. The analysis of data revealed that a diversity of ideas was more likely to emerge from within balanced groups than from within random groups particularly when the random groups were heavily skewed towards one team role preference. This provided a compelling reason for explaining why balanced groups may lead to better knowledge-building activity.

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ID Code: 3569
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Team Role, CSCL, Knowledge, building
ISSN: 1324-9339
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2003 AARE
Copyright Statement: Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Deposited On: 09 Mar 2006 00:00
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2010 12:30

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