Læringspotentialer i social software

Student thesis: Master Thesis and HD Thesis

  • Sine Kusk Clausen
  • Mette Krøjer Jacobsen
This dissertation investigates the learning potentials of social software. Today, there is a rising tendency for educational institutions to implement technological tools with a view to supporting the students' learning process and facilitating social processes amongst students. The study is based on “Ekademia - a social networking site” applied by students at the faculty of Humanistic Informatics at Aalborg University. The objective of Ekademia is to give students an opportunity to develop their written reflection capabilities and establish professional and social identities and communities. In this dissertation we shall investigate Ekademia’s learning potential on the basis of three aspects, namely: Usability, learnability and sociability. Learnability is defined as the potential to acquire knowledge, sociability as the potential to cooperate with others and usability as the potential to use software with great skill and ease. This three-tier system is tested by means of the usability test method termed heuristic evaluation, which in extended form covers all three aspects including empiric data collection such as interviews with Ekademia's initiators and a questionnaire study of the users. When discussing development of IT-supported learning environments an obvious issue is the balance between teacher controlled activities and user initiated contents. This dissertation therefore includes empirical data from an online master course named “E-learning – from idea to evaluation”. The master course is prepared in accordance with the pedagogical model for potential learning developed by Gilly Salmon, professor in E-learning and learning technologies who structures E-learning processes by use of strictly controlled activities. A number of concrete issues relating to the three aspects – learnability, sociability and usability – are uncovered in this dissertation. Based on this and with the inclusion of data from the secondary case, this dissertation discusses how learning potentials of social software can be improved.
Publication date2008
Publishing institutionAalborg Universitet
ID: 14633983