Deep in the Hearts of Learners: Insights into the Nature of Online Community

February 25, 2003


Recent literature on online learning gives credence to the difficulty inherent in understanding the sense of online community. Quantitative studies especially have concluded with calls for deeper, more intensive explorations into what really happens in online learning environments. In this article the results of an interpretive study conducted among adult learners engaged in online study present an intensive and revealing look into learners’ interaction with online community. Online learning is demanding and unforgiving; in feeling its relentless pull, learners construct their own lines of defense that allow them to complete their studies successfully while maintaining their independence and integrity.

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