Publication details

Studying Student Communication during Synchronous Online University Teaching with Social Network Analysis



Year of publication 2021
Type Article in Proceedings
Conference Conference Proceedings. The Future of Education 2021
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Keywords online learning; e-learning; student communication; student engagement; social network analysis
Description In the light of nation-wide containment measures to COVID-19, most university programs in the Czech Republic took a form of online courses. Both the instructors and the students have found themselves facing challenges stemming from online learning including a lack of real-time classroom participation and interaction. Importantly, student participation in classroom during lessons as part of cognitive engagement is a critical predictor of academic success. While in-person participation at school is currently out of question, participation in online courses comes into play. This study provides an initial exploratory insight – a detailed graphical investigation of synchronous interaction in four online university courses at Masaryk University with the help of social network analysis. Visualizations using social networks proved to be a useful tool for analyzing synchronous online interaction as it gave a clear picture what the interaction during the lessons looked like, and allowed an effective comparison both within and between the courses. With the exception of one lesson exhibiting high degree of student-student interaction, the prevailing interaction pattern present across all courses was a star-shaped two-way interaction pattern centered around the teacher.
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