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Appears in Collections:Faculty of Social Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: The Potential of Online Academic Communities for Teaching Staff: Findings from a Pilot Study of the SocialLearn Platform
Author(s): McCall, Vikki
Mooney, Gerry
Rutherford, Paul
Gilmour, Alison
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Keywords: online community
staff development
social media
Communities of Inquiry
Issue Date: 1-Oct-2014
Date Deposited: 17-Nov-2015
Citation: McCall V, Mooney G, Rutherford P & Gilmour A (2014) The Potential of Online Academic Communities for Teaching Staff: Findings from a Pilot Study of the SocialLearn Platform. International Journal of Web Based Communities, 10 (4), pp. 404-425.
Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to offer some insight from an evaluation that explored the viability, usefulness and potential of the online platform SocialLearn in providing an online community for Open University Associate Lecturers (part-time teaching staff). Findings from two focus groups and a staff survey highlighted both the potential of an online community and the barriers to successful implementation. In applying a qualitative analysis of the 'Communities of Inquiry' (CoI) framework, the pilot project highlighted the importance of social presence and cognitive presence, with minimal elements of a teaching presence within the online staff community. Key learning outcomes around privacy, usability and multi-level communications were found to be central in creating a successful online academic environment for teaching staff. The potential of online academic communities for teaching staff: Findings from a pilot study of the SocialLearn platform. Available from: [accessed Nov 4, 2015].
DOI Link: 10.1504/IJWBC.2014.065392
Rights: Publisher policy allows this work to be made available in this repository. Published in International Journal of Web Based Communities by Inderscience. The original publication is available at:

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