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Conducting Qualitative Research of Learning in Online Spaces
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Conducting Qualitative Research of Learning in Online Spaces



March 2016 | 232 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Qualitative researchers have grappled with how online inquiry shifts research procedures such as gaining access to spaces, communicating with participants, and obtaining informed consent. Drawing on a multimethod approach, Conducting Qualitative Research of Learning in Online Spaces explores how to design and conduct diverse studies in online environments. The book focuses on formal and informal learning practices that occur in evolving online spaces. The text shows researchers how they can draw upon a variety of theoretical frameworks, methodological approaches, and data sources. Examples of qualitative research in online spaces, along with guiding questions, support readers at every phase of the research process. 
 
Chapter 1: What Is Online Learning and How Is It Informed by Qualitative Research
Guiding Questions

 
Introduction

 
Mediated Spaces and Online Learning

 
Making Pragmatic Choices about Methods

 
Choosing among Qualitative Traditions

 
Qualitative Approaches

 
Research Paradigms and Philosophical Stances in a Study's Design

 
Pragmatic Research and Remix: Considering Multimethod Approaches

 
Remix

 
Conclusion

 
Connecting to Your Work

 
 
Chapter 2: What Kinds of Online Spaces Exist?
Guiding Questions

 
Introduction

 
Conceptualizing Online Spaces as Field Sites

 
Defining the Field Site

 
Understanding Networked Field Sites

 
Learning in Social Networking Forums

 
Mapping Networked Field Sites

 
Conclusion

 
Connecting to Your Work

 
 
Chapter 3: How Do We Conceptualize Learning in Online Spaces?
Guiding Questions

 
Introduction

 
Using Learning Theory as a Tool fro Research Design

 
Complementary and Contradictory Theories of Learning

 
Theories of Learning

 
Conclusion

 
Connecting to Your Work

 
 
Chapter 4: What Does It Mean to Be a Qualitative Researcher of Online Spaces?
Guiding Questions

 
Introduction

 
Aspects of Researching Online Meaning Making

 
Conclusion

 
Connecting to Your Work

 
 
Chapter 5: What Methodological Tools Are Available for Data Collection?
Guiding Questions

 
Introduction

 
Establishing Trustworthiness

 
Trustworthiness and Analytic Openness

 
Data Sources

 
Conclusion

 
Connecting to Your Work

 
 
Chapter 6: What Tools are Available for Data Analysis?
Guiding Questions

 
Introduction

 
Moving from Data Collection to Analysis

 
Considering Data Analysis in Networked Field Sites

 
Innovation with Methods

 
Conclusion

 
Connecting to Your Work

 
 
Chapter 7: What Is Ethical Research?
Guiding Questions

 
Introduction

 
Research Ethics and Policies across Multiple Contexts

 
The Public versus the Private Web

 
Conclusion

 
Connecting to Your Work

 
 
Chapter 8: How Might Research Change in New Times?
Guiding Questions

 
Introduction

 
The Complicated Nature of Studying Learning in Online Spaces

 
(Re)Imagining Research Techniques

 
Shifting Cultures, Shifting Boundaries

 
Conclusion

 
Connecting to Your Work

 

For breaking the barrier of technology and qualitative research, Conducting Qualitative Research of Learning in Online Spaces is a confidence builder for those who have never ventured into such spaces. Very thoughtful and accessible, I highly recommend this text.

Darnell Bradley
Cardinal Stritch University

This book helps students not only to understand the complexities of researching online learning but also how they can apply these theoretical perspectives to their own research through its extensive and varied examples of contemporary online research.

Damiana Gibbons Pyles
Appalachian State University

This book takes online qualitative research methods to the next level in terms of innovative methods, data collection and analysis, as well as mapping out a more nuanced and useful set of ethical perspectives to guide researcher practice in online spaces.

Pamela Whitehouse
Midwestern State University

In a rapidly evolving field, this book stands as valuable point of reference. It offers a lively, thoughtful and critical commentary on learning in online spaces, and challenges readers to do the same. The authors offer an agenda to advance the field further, identifying the foundational issues and approaches to studying these which will shape new work in the years ahead.

Martin Oliver
University College London, Institute of Education

In the long history of education, online learning is a recent advancement of pedagogy.  Online instructors, researchers, and students have, to-date, simultaneously enacted a range of individualized methods to conduct their work, while seeking a primer on guidelines to follow that does not exist. Finally, they have Conducting Qualitative Research of Learning in Online Spaces to help them organize their efforts, ethics, tools, and definitions and they no longer have to spend valuable research time seeking such standards.

Robert G. Doyle
Harvard University

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Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1


Hannah Rose Gerber

Hannah R. Gerber is an associate professor in the Department of Language, Literacy and Special Populations at Sam Houston State University in Texas, where she teaches graduate courses in digital epistemologies and virtual ethnography. To date, Gerber’s research has focused on adolescents and their videogaming practices, examining confluences of learning across various literacies in multiple online and offline settings. She has conducted research in diverse environments such as homes, libraries, and schools, and within inner city, rural, and international contexts such as North America, Middle East, and South East Asia. She has given... More About Author

Sandra Schamroth Abrams

Sandra Schamroth Abrams is an associate professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at St. John’s University in New York. Her research of digital literacies and videogaming provides insight into agentive learning, layered meaning making, and pedagogical discovery located at the intersection of online and offline experiences. Her recent work appears in the Journal of Adolescent & Adult Education, Journal of Literacy Research, and Educational Media International.  She is author of Integrating Virtual and Traditional Learning in 6-12 Classrooms: A Layered Literacies Approach to Multimodal Meaning Making (Routledge) and... More About Author

Jennifer Scott Curwood

Jen Scott Curwood is a senior lecturer in English education and media studies at the University of Sydney in Australia. Her research focuses on literacy, technology, and teacher professional development, and her current work investigates young adults' writing practices in online spaces and teachers' integration of digital tools in content area classrooms. Curwood's recent scholarship has appeared in the Journal of Literacy Research, the Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, Teaching Education, and Learning, Media, and Technology. More About Author

Alecia M. Magnifico

Alecia Marie Magnifico is a teacher educator and a learning scientist whose research focuses on writing, digital literacies, and learning in formal and informal environments. Currently, she is an assistant professor of English teaching at the University of New Hampshire, where she teaches courses on English teaching, digital literacies, and research methods. Magnifico's research interests focus on understanding, supporting, and encouraging adolescents' writing for different audiences. Much of her writing in this area describes and theorizes composition across formal and informal contexts, although she also works with teachers to design... More About Author

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ISBN: 9781483333847
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