Virtual School Meanderings

April 16, 2017

CIDER Session April 19, 2017

And another from Thursday’s inbox…

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Athabasca University Social Software in Undergraduate Studies
Dear CIDER Member,

We invite you to our upcoming CIDER session on April 19, 2017. This free, online session will feature Dr. Gerald Ardito, Assistant Professor of STEM-D Education at Pace University School of Education.

Title: Building Student Networks: Towards a Connectivist Analysis of Classroom Learning Environments

This presentation will describe a pilot program that sought to apply key concepts and research in Distance Education to a blended secondary Science classroom. It involved a cohort of 8th grade Biology students who participated in a blended, self-directed Biology course. This course was designed so that students had the maximum amount of freedom and choice.

Various types of data analysis techniques were performed in order to investigate the students’ personal learning networks and how these were affected by this technology enhanced self-directed learning and a blended learning environment. Findings indicate that the students who performed better than expected in the class had the largest and most robust learning networks. The converse was also true; students who did less well than expected were shown to have small and less robust learning networks. This study develops a methodology for applying Connectivist learning theory to a blended learning environment. Most interestingly, these findings are consistent to those in similar studies involving Distance Education, which suggests these methods might be extensible to primary and secondary educational settings.

When: Wednesday, April 19, 201711am to 12noon Mountain Time (Canada)

Where: Online through Adobe Connect at:

Registration is not required; all are welcome. For more information on CIDER and our Sessions, please visit our website:

Please note that it is important to set up your system prior to the event. Make sure your Mac or PC is equipped with a microphone and speakers, so that you can use the audio functionality built into the conferencing software. The Adobe Connect platform may require an update to your Flash Player; allow time for this update by joining the session 10 minutes prior to the scheduled presentation.


CIDER sessions are brought to you by the International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning (IRRODL) and the Centre for Distance Education, Athabasca University: Canada’s Open University and leader in professional online education. The Sessions and their recordings are open and available to all, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Our mailing address is:

Athabasca University

Canadian Initiative for Distance Education Research
1200, 10011 – 109 Street

Edmonton, AB T5J 3S8


Add us to your address book

This email was sent to
Athabasca University · Canadian Initiative for Distance Education Research · 1200, 10011 – 109 Street · Edmonton, AB T5J 3S8 · Canada

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