journal cover

I’ve been spending time browsing through these open access journals mentioned on my previous post.
The Spring 2009 issue of The Journal of Interactive Online Learning has an article “Am I Making Sense Here?”: What blogging Reveals about Undergraduate Student Understanding.
This study examines how blogs can extend learning and facilitate transfer of learned concepts. Blogging was used after a nutrition course was finished to document and analyze the learning. Blogging conversations were explored over seven weeks to determine what happened in the blog conversations and to see how participants were making meaning of nutrition science concepts. Students were asked to post 21 times (3x per week) and comment on 35 posts by others (5x per week). Most posted and commmented more often than requested.

Four themes emerged from the analysis of how students made meaning of the nutrition concepts through their blog conversations. The first themes had students writing about nutrition science from the context of their daily lives as they strived to apply what they had learned. The second theme had participants recognizing and critiquing perceived barriers to successfully applying what they had learned about nutrition. The third theme had the students viewing the news media as an expert source of information as there was no instructor voice in the blogs. The fourth theme centers on unanswered questions in conversations and how these questions indicate gaps in students’ understanding of nutrition concepts.

The study has samples of the orientation materials used and interview protocol.It’s an interesting qualitative case study that could get us thinking about directions to head toward in future studies.

This online journal has lots of interesting articles. Its aims as listed on the “About” page are:

Provide a forum for the dissemination of research on interactive online education

Disseminate ideas that enhance the practical aspects of interactive online education

Further knowledge and understanding of emerging innovations in online education

Foster debate about the use and application of online education