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Constructing Community in Higher Education Regardless of Proximity: Re-Imagining the Teacher Education Experience within Social Networking Technology

Constructing Community in Higher Education Regardless of Proximity: Re-Imagining the Teacher Education Experience within Social Networking Technology
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Author(s): Karina Clemmons (University of Arkansas at Little Rock, USA), Amanda Nolen (University of Arkansas at Little Rock, USA) and Judith A. Hayn (University of Arkansas at Little Rock, USA)
Copyright: 2014
Pages: 17
Source title: Handbook of Research on Transnational Higher Education
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Siran Mukerji (IGNOU, India) and Purnendu Tripathi (IGNOU, India)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4458-8.ch036

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Abstract

In an increasingly global world where students are increasingly mobile and not bound by the same rules of proximity as before (Beckmann, 2010; Healey, 2008), it becomes critically important to understand how learning can take place and how community can be built through virtual communities. This chapter reports the results of a study that investigated whether preservice and beginning teachers involved in the dialogue of an emergent online social networking community engage in meaningful educational and professionally enriching experiences. The researchers specifically examined how online social networking in teacher education programs addresses issues related to: (1) the isolation students feel while in the field; (2) the lack of community and dialogue among students; (3) the disconnectedness between classroom knowledge and field experiences; (4) the limited reflective practices observed among novice teachers; and (5) the need to appreciate multiple perspectives and diverse cultures.

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