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Learning With Weblogs: Enhancing Cognitive and Social Knowledge Construction

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2 Author(s)
Helen S. Du ; Dept. of Inf. Syst., City Univ. of Hong Kong, Kowloon ; Christian Wagner

This study investigated the impact of weblog use on individual learning in the context of university senior-level business education. As an emergent form of personal communication, weblogs enable people to publish their thoughts as webpages, and to share information and knowledge. Recognizing the potential impact of weblogs on knowledge expression and sharing, this research sought to empirically examine whether the continuous use of weblogs as online learning logs would affect student learning performance. The assumption was that effective use of weblogs promoted the constructivist models of learning by supporting both cognitive and social knowledge construction, and by reinforcing individual accountability in learning. Results from an Information Systems undergraduate course with 31 participants indicated that the performance of students' weblogs was a significant predictor of the learning outcome (while traditional coursework was not). Moreover, individuals' cognitive construction effort to build their own mental models and social construction effort to further enrich/expand knowledge resources appeared to be two key aspects of the constructivist learning with weblogs. Our results imply the potential benefit of using weblogs as a knowledge construction tool and a social learning medium

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication  (Volume:50 ,  Issue: 1 )