Participatory action research in the age of social media: Literacies, affinity spaces and learning

Machin-Mastromatteo, Juan-Daniel Participatory action research in the age of social media: Literacies, affinity spaces and learning. New Library World, 2012, vol. 113, n. 11/12, pp. 571-585. [Journal article (Paginated)]

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English abstract

This article summarizes the developments, methodological design, and some of the theories framed within a PhD research about the integration of social media in higher education. Its aims are to determine significant issues, challenges and opportunities that emerge when social media are integrated into learning environments in higher education. ‘Doing Online Relearning through Information Skills’ (DORIS) is proposed as a research framework to address the aims, objectives, and research questions of this study. It was conceived from a Participatory Action Research perspective. This approach is intended to help discover and reflect upon teaching and learning practices in a technologically mediated educational setting. Furthermore, the concept of affinity spaces is discussed, together with its distinction from the concept of communities of practice. The data collection methods planned to conduct the study are: diagnostic questionnaire, blog, social learners' input and reports, a second questionnaire, and semi-structured interviews. The theory of affinity spaces offers a powerful way of thinking about teaching and learning processes mediated by different technologies. The heuristics that will focus the data collection and analysis are: a) on the function of content, and b) on the function of participants’ interactions with the content and/or with one another. DORIS is proposed as a powerful way to organize learning interventions through the structure of information literacy skills. It is grounded on action research and on constructivist, blended, and problem based learning. Researchers, librarians or educators can adapt this model for teaching, learning and researching about and with social media or for other technologically mediated learning environments, or could be adapted for information literacy programs.

Spanish abstract

Este artículo resume los desarrollos, diseño metodológico, y algunas de las teorías donde se ubica una investigación doctoral sobre la integración de las redes sociales en la educación superior. Su meta es determinar problemas significativos, retos y oportunidades que surjen cuando las redes sociales son integradas en entornos de aprendizaje específicos de la educación superior. ‘Reaprendiendo en Línea a través de Habilidades Informativas' (ó 'Doing Online Relearning through Information Skills’, DORIS) se propone como un marco metodológico para investigar la mencionada meta, los objetivos, y las correspondientes preguntas de investigación de este estudio. El mismo fue concebido desde una perspectiva de Investigación-Acción Participativa. Se prevé que este enfoque ayude a descubrir y reflexionar sobre las prácticas de enseñanza y aprendizaje dentro de un entorno educativo que se encuentra mediado por la tecnología. Además, e discute el concepto de espacios de afinidad, junto con su distinción del concepto de comunidades de práctica. Los métodos para la colección de datos que se plantean utilizar son: un cuestionario diagnóstico, un blog, los aportes y reportes de los 'aprendedores sociales', un cuestionario de seguimiento, y entrevistas semi-estructuradas. La teoría de los espacios de afinidad ofrece una manera poderosa de pensar sobre los procesos de enseñanza y aprendizaje que son mediados por distintas tecnologías. La colección y análisis de datos estará conducida por un análisis heurístico que consta de: a) la función contenido, y b) la función de las interacciones de los participantes, tanto con el contenido como entre ellos mismos. DORIS se propone como una manera efectiva de organizar intervenciones de aprendizaje a través de una estructura de habilidades informativas. Se basa en la investigación-acción y el aprendizaje constructivista, mixto, y basado en problemas. Distintos investigadores, bibliotecarios, o educadores pueden adaptar este modelo para la enseñanza, el aprendizaje y la investigación 'sobre y con las redes sociales' u otros entornos de aprendizaje mediados por la tecnología; o puede ser adaptado para programas de alfabetización informacional.

Item type: Journal article (Paginated)
Keywords: social media, higher education, teaching, learning, participatory action research, literacies, information literacy, digital literacy, new literacies, affinity spaces
Subjects: C. Users, literacy and reading.
G. Industry, profession and education.
L. Information technology and library technology
Depositing user: Juan-Daniel Machin-Mastromatteo
Date deposited: 16 Jan 2013 14:57
Last modified: 02 Oct 2014 12:24


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