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Presentation: Democratic collaborative dialogue and negotiation of meaning in digital teaching and learning environments

Elsebeth Korsgaard Sorensen, Aarhus University Outline Empircal context Previous findings and...

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Gráinne Conole
4 May 2010

Elsebeth Korsgaard Sorensen, Aarhus University


  • Empircal context
  • Previous findings and conclusions
  • Language games as optic for capturing the analutical unit for assessment of collaboration

Course design

  • Preparation period - work in small virtual groups to do some readings and take part in some roles. Prepared some problems to discuss in the forum. Group distribute roles for plenum (presenter, opponent, moderator)
  • Two week debate period. Present in one of three themes a relevant problem drawing on both own experience

Meta-awareness was key - insights into qulaity and design of online delivery and meta=reflection etc.

Theoretical and pedagogic course desing elements: shared repetoire, Wenger, 1998 (CoP), Bateson, 1976 (reflection elements), Stahl, 1999, Sorensen and Takle - 2001/2002

Promoting quality in dialogues use of meta-categories as criteria of quality in assessment of knowledge building

Previous conclusions

  • Forced requirements works well as kick off for collaborative engagement ie as a means of ensuring participation
  • If true collaboration learning requires negotation of meaning we cant accept - connected monologues, AND quality ad reflective behaviour acheived at the expense of social interaction
  • To investigate the KB-quality of the collaborative interaction we need to look for a theoretical framework that is able to capture the sequences of dialogue in order to find the appropriate analytic unit to look at

Research problem - using Wiittgenstein, 1974 explore notion of Languages Grames (LG) as a tool. LGs have different aspects, a sequence of commuicative actions, sub-games are embedded, consists of a series of openings and dialogue, each game creates a set of expectations about the continuation of the game.

We highlighted: Initiative, Expectation and Closure and wanted to look for these in the dialogue.

All LG needed iniative and expectationa and then closure.


Having defined a way of quantifiying LG - we can enhanced the group perspective of particiant then can we use this to promote pedagogic design to inform future initiatives.

Assumption: No of LG completed will be proportional to the quality of collaboration

Research questions

  • Can LG act as a practical tool for diagnosing dialogue and exposing collaborative learniing?
  • Can it promote learning and instruction in online processes?
  • Can it be used to pin point weaknesses and offer new insights

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