Building classroom community at a distance: A case study

  • Alfred P. Rovai


The purpose of this study was to analyze a five-week graduate-level education course taught entirely at a distance via the Internet using the Blackboard.comSM e-learning system, with emphasis on exploring the dynamics of sense of classroom community. Subjects were 20 adult learners, evenly divided between males and females, who were administered the sense of classroom community index at the beginning and end of the course in order to measure classroom community. Findings indicated that on-line learners took advantage of the “learn anytime” characteristics of the Internet by accessing the course seven days per week, 24 hours per day. Sense of classroom community grew significantly during the course. Females manifested a stronger sense of community than their male counterparts both at the start and end of the course. Additionally, female students exhibited a mostly connected communication pattern while the communication pattern of males was mostly independent.


Communication Pattern Distance Education Discussion Board Discussion Topic Classroom Community 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Association for Educational Communications and Technology 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alfred P. Rovai
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Education of Regent University at Virginia Beach

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