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Scripting for Collaborative Search Computer-Supported Classroom Activities

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Journal of Educational Technology & Society Volume 17, Number 3 ISSN 1176-3647 e-ISSN 1176-3647


Searching online is one of the most powerful resources today's students have for accessing information. Searching in groups is a daily practice across multiple contexts; however, the tools we use for searching online do not enable collaborative practices and traditional search models consider a single user navigating online in solitary. This paper presents a three level conceptual model, called the Collaborative Search Procedural Model, which enables the implementation of collaborative search classroom activities based on multi-user collaborative search scripts. A software solution, CollSearch, which follows the Collaborative Search Procedural Model and offers a unified tool to enable collaborative searching computer-supported classroom activities, is also presented. Empirical evaluation of the tool with high school students as part of an English as a second language course shows that students' outcomes improve when compared to non-scripted group search. Results show that by following the Collaborative Search Procedural Model students better appropriate the work they build together with their group. The OECD has highlighted the importance of collaborative work by the fact that PISA 2015 will assess collaborative problem solving; collaborative search is a fertile field for fostering better group work interactions. This paper shows that new tools that enable collaborative work dynamics in searching for information must be developed in order to address the educational challenges that today's students are facing.


Verdugo, R., Barros, L., Albornoz, D., Nussbaum, M. & McFarlane, A. Scripting for Collaborative Search Computer-Supported Classroom Activities. Journal of Educational Technology & Society, 17(3), 308-319. Retrieved October 15, 2019 from .

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