Virtual collaborative space to support active learning uri icon


  • Active learning is an educational strategy that promotes the development of the students' critical and creative thinking through carefully designed activities. Collaborative learning techniques such as Problem-Based Learning (PBL) and Project-Oriented Learning (POL) are useful tools to achieve effective active learning. However, teachers often face important challenges promoting, monitoring and ensuring a well-balanced collaboration so both - workload and learning are significant and also as equitable as possible among team members. With the advent of new social software, virtual collaborative environments have become an important part of our lives. Nevertheless file sharing and e-mail communication alone do not necessarily promote learning. It is necessary to combine the learning methodologies with the appropriate software tools to create a virtual collaborative space that promotes active learning. The paper reviews related work on active learning, problem based learning (PBL), project oriented learning (POL), social software tools, and collaborative virtual environments. Hence, a virtual collaborative space that integrates distributed web interactivity tools with learning methodologies is the focus of this paper. A virtual collaborative space using the collaborative elements in Blackboard 9.1 applied to PBL and POL is also presented. © 2011 IEEE.

Publication date

  • December 1, 2011