Vertical versus shared e-leadership approach in online project-based learning: a comparison of self-regulated learning skills, motivation and group collaboration processes

  • Ramazan YilmazEmail author
  • Fatma Gizem Karaoglan Yilmaz
  • Hafize Keser


The purpose of this research is to examine the effect of vertical and shared e-leadership approaches on self-regulated learning skills, motivation and group collaboration processes (group cohesion, group atmosphere, and group transactive memory system) in online project-based learning. The study was carried out according to a factorial experimental design (2 × 2) and mixed methods approach was used. The study was conducted on 41 teacher candidates randomly assigned to vertical and shared e-leadership groups. As a data collection tool; Self-Regulated Learning Scale, Motivation Scale, Transactive Memory Scale, Group Atmosphere Scale, Group Cohesion Scale, and a semi-structured interview form were used. Research findings indicate that there is no statistically significant difference between vertical and shared e-leadership groups in terms of self-regulated learning skills, motivation and group collaboration processes. In other words, both leadership approaches were found to be useful in the management of groups in online project-based learning. The qualitative findings of the research reveal that there are some advantages and disadvantages in both approaches. In this context, the shared e-leadership approach is determined to be useful especially in terms of fostering the sense of belonging to the group by sharing the leadership role within the group, ensuring a fair distribution of responsibility and workload among the group members. The vertical e-leadership approach was found to be useful in providing communication, cooperation and coordination among the group members thanks to the group leader, ensuring the planned progress of the group works.


Online project-based learning Vertical and shared e-leadership Self-regulated learning skills Motivation Group collaboration processes 



The preliminary version of this study was presented at 7th International Conference on Education (IC-ED-2018), BAU International Berlin University of Applied Sciences, Berlin, Germany, 28–30 June 2018.

Funding information

The authors declare that they have no funding of this study.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Science, Department of Computer Technology and Information SystemsBartin UniversityBartinTurkey
  2. 2.Faculty of Educational Sciences, Department of Computer Education and Instructional TechnologyAnkara UniversityAnkaraTurkey

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