A framework for interaction and cognitive engagement in connectivist learning contexts

  • Zhijun Wang Beijing Normal University
  • Li Chen Beijing Normal University
  • Terry Anderson Athabasca University
Keywords: connectivist learning, interaction, connectivism, cognitive engagement, theory building, cMOOCs,

Abstract

Interaction has always been highly valued in education, especially in distance education (Moore, 1989; Anderson, 2003; Chen, 2004a; Woo & Reeves, 2007; Wang, 2013; Conrad, in press). It has been associated with motivation (Mahle, 2011; Wen-chi, et al., 2011), persistence (Tello, 2007; Joo, Lim, & Kim, 2011), deep learning (Offir, et al., 2008) and other components of effective learning. With the development of interactive technologies, and related connectivism learning theories (Siemens, 2005a; Downes, 2005), interaction theory has expanded to include interactions not only with human actors, but also with machines and digital artifacts. This paper explores the characteristics and principles of connectivist learning in an increasingly open and connected age. A theory building methodology is used to create a new theoretical model which we hope can be used by researchers and practitioners to examine and support multiple types of effective educational interactions. Inspired by the hierarchical model for instructional interaction (HMII) (Chen, 2004b) in distance learning, a framework for interaction and cognitive engagement in connectivist learning contexts has been constructed. Based on cognitive engagement theories, the interaction of connectivist learning is divided into four levels: operation interaction, wayfinding interaction, sensemaking interaction, and innovation interaction. Connectivist learning is thus a networking and recursive process of these four levels of interaction.

Author Biographies

Zhijun Wang, Beijing Normal University
Research Centrt of Distance Education PhD Candiate
Li Chen, Beijing Normal University
Research Centrt of Distance Education Professor
Terry Anderson, Athabasca University
Center for Distance Education
Published
2014-04-01
How to Cite
Wang, Z., Chen, L., & Anderson, T. (2014). A framework for interaction and cognitive engagement in connectivist learning contexts. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 15(2). https://doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v15i2.1709
Section
Research Articles