Media Multiplexity in Connectivist MOOCs: Examining the Role of Social Media in Collaborative Learning #LAK15


Can social media usage enhance collaborative learning? That is one of the questions that Dr. Anatoliy Gruzd (@gruzd) of Ryerson University Ted Rogers School of Management and Professor Caroline Haythornwaite (@hthwaite) of the University of British Columbia are setting out to answer.

With the help of collaborators Rafa Absar (@rafaabsar) at Clarkson University and Drew Paulin (@drewpaulin) at the University of British Columbia iSchool, the team examined the use of multiple social media platforms for learning in two connectivist MOOCs (or cMOOCs).

In this project, Dr. Gruzd and Dr. Haythornwaite are developing and evaluating novel learning analytics for detecting and studying collaborative learning processes. This project is part of a larger five year (2013-2018) research initiative called  ‘Learning Analytics in the Social Media Age’ aimed at understanding how online social networks influence educational models.  The initiative is funded by the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC).

The team will be presenting some of their preliminary findings at the upcoming 5th International Conference on Learning Analytics and Knowledge “Scaling Up: Big Data to Big Impact” happening this week (March 16-20) at Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY.  Here is a preview of their poster and preliminary findings and an infographic explaining the theory of media multiplexity, as originally proposed by Dr. Haythornwaite in early 2000s and recently expanded to include social media.

If you have any questions or comments about the “Media Multiplexity in Connectivist MOOCs” project, please get in touch with us.

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