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Participation, interaction, and academic achievement in an online discussion environment

, Michigan State University, United States ; , University of California, Irvine, United States

Computers & Education Volume 84, Number 1, ISSN 0360-1315 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


Though online writing can be beneficial for diverse students in out-of-school environments, there is little consensus on the value of its use in schools. This study examined the online discussion of 48 fifth-grade students and their teachers over the 2009–2010 school year in a public school with large numbers of English learners. We collected students' statewide standardized writing and reading test scores, as well as an archive of all participants' discussion threads during the school year. Students' participation and interaction pattern in the online discussion environment over a school year was examined using growth model analysis and social network analysis. The effect of students' participation on their academic achievement was analyzed using multiple regressions. The results suggest that well-designed online discussions among linguistically diverse upper elementary students can result in increased participation and interaction, leading to language and literacy development.


Zheng, B. & Warschauer, M. (2015). Participation, interaction, and academic achievement in an online discussion environment. Computers & Education, 84(1), 78-89. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved July 30, 2021 from .

This record was imported from Computers & Education on January 29, 2019. Computers & Education is a publication of Elsevier.

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