Research methods for validating and deriving guidelines for e‐learning online communities

Chadia Abras (Goucher College, 1021 Dulaney Valley Road, Baltimore, Maryland 21204, USA.)
Ant Ozok (Department of Information Systems, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD 21250, USA)
Jenny Preece (College of Information Studies, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, 20742, USA)

Interactive Technology and Smart Education

ISSN: 1741-5659

Publication date: 30 November 2005


E‐learning is becoming a major component in academia today. Therefore, the success of e‐learning online communities is crucial in order to ensure their permanency and effectiveness. There is a need for formalized guidelines in e‐learning that instruct the designer (course instructor) on how to design, maintain, and manage a course. Some research has been done on the subject, but none proposes formalized guidelines, and none draws the results from the users’ perspectives. The users, students in this case, should be at the heart of the design and their thoughts, wishes, and needs should be implemented in the user‐centered design. In this study, through an iterative testing approach, the researchers formalized and validated a set of design heuristics that instruct an online educator on how to design, manage, deliver, and nurture an e‐Learning online community.



Abras, C., Ozok, A. and Preece, J. (2005), "Research methods for validating and deriving guidelines for e‐learning online communities", Interactive Technology and Smart Education, Vol. 2 No. 4, pp. 207-219.

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Copyright © 2005, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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