About this paper

Appears in:
Page: 5210
Publication year: 2009
ISBN: 978-84-612-9801-3
ISSN: 2340-1117

Conference name: 1st International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-8 July, 2009
Location: Barcelona ,Spain

ICAMP – EXPLORING THE USE OF SOCIAL SOFTWARE IN HIGHER EDUCATION

B. Kieslinger, C.M. Fabian, S. Fiedler

Centre for Social Innovation - ZSI (AUSTRIA)
Driven by continuous socio-economic changes, such as the increase of knowledge intensive jobs or the demand for new skills and competencies, the iCamp project started over 3 years ago with the vision to create an open virtual learning environment for specific competence advancements. During the course of the project the research team in iCamp followed a design-based research approach with a strong focus on designing for real life trials, getting feedback from practitioners and feeding this knowledge into advanced pedagogical concepts and new technological developments for cross-cultural collaboration in digitally mediated environments.

The iCamp educational intervention model that is heavily based on the experiences from the field studies describes strategies as to how facilitators may intervene in order to advance certain competences, namely self-directing personal learning projects, collaborating with peers and social networking. The iCamp educational intervention approach can now be applied within a certain range of convenience.

With regards to the technological advancements the main focus in iCamp has been set on social software technologies and its usage and adaptations for specific educational needs. A set of tools, including ready to use elements, up to rather experimental technologies that need further research before they can be implemented in practice, have been developed. iCamp committed to an open source strategy from the beginning following the believes of a knowledge sharing community and many institutions have meanwhile opted for open source software solutions for TEL.

Overall, the iCamp project was embedded in a highly complex contextual frame and achieved well-grounded research results on both, applied and more basic level. In addition, iCamp was very actively shaping an important research trend towards social software applications, which have started to penetrate educational landscapes. iCamp has been one of the pioneers in promoting the use of social software in Higher Education.

This paper will generally present the experiences from this research project and especially from the field studies. In addition, we will focus on the results of the third field trials and the analysis of weblogs as the main tool for the learning activities. We have applied the analytical technique of summarisation, whereby categories are created in an inductive procedure by reducing, paraphrasing and generalising relevant text passages. Our main research question was “How did the students orientate themselves in an international, distributed and technologically mediated learning environment?”

The collaboration experience, especially from the peer-facilitating process, was the most prominent issue that was reflected in the weblogs. Students had the possibility to ask and discuss relevant issues with their peers and facilitators and reflected their own input by the given feedback from the others. Regulating and peer-facilitating have been the main two categories derived from the Weblog entries that deal with the issues of collaboration.

Students also had to deal with topics concerning their own selfmanagement and the way they self-directed their learning process in intentional learning projects. The handling with resources such as material, time and new Web 2.0 tools as well as their personal needs and attitudes were the most challenging but also motivating aspects for the students according to their Weblogs.
@InProceedings{KIESLINGER2009ICA,
author = {Kieslinger, B. and Fabian, C.M. and Fiedler, S.},
title = {ICAMP – EXPLORING THE USE OF SOCIAL SOFTWARE IN HIGHER EDUCATION},
series = {1st International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN09 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-612-9801-3},
issn = {2340-1117},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona ,Spain},
month = {6-8 July, 2009},
year = {2009},
pages = {5210}}
TY - CONF
AU - B. Kieslinger AU - C.M. Fabian AU - S. Fiedler
TI - ICAMP – EXPLORING THE USE OF SOCIAL SOFTWARE IN HIGHER EDUCATION
SN - 978-84-612-9801-3/2340-1117
PY - 2009
Y1 - 6-8 July, 2009
CI - Barcelona ,Spain
JO - 1st International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN09 Proceedings
SP - 5210
EP - 5210
ER -
B. Kieslinger, C.M. Fabian, S. Fiedler (2009) ICAMP – EXPLORING THE USE OF SOCIAL SOFTWARE IN HIGHER EDUCATION, EDULEARN09 Proceedings, p. 5210.
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