Dalla laurea alla professione di insegnante: caso di studio di formazione continua attraverso una comunità on line
Contributor(s)FERRI, PAOLO MARIA
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AbstractThis work is based on a three-year experiment and describes and analyses a case study of ongoing training through an online community of teachers. The idea of creating this space came from former Primary Education students who are now teaching at nursery and primary schools in the Lombardy Region. The space is hosted on a Web 2.0 platform, Socialgo, and has the peculiarity that, in addition to Primary Education graduates, its members also include professors and advisers from the degree course. This thesis is organised in five chapters. Chapter I: the theoretical framework The first chapter outlines a theoretical framework that discusses the concept of community: in particular, it reviews several of the most important uses of the term in a sociological, philosophical, psychological and pedagogical context. Then, it examines the different types of communities to define peculiarities and differences: communities of practice, practice networks, virtual communities and learning communities. Chapter II: the framework of context The second chapter outlines the framework of context of the research: it moves from a description of the current teaching profession in the information society and supports the important of ongoing education and informal learning. The chapter continues with an analysis of several communities of teachers (in Italy and abroad) on the Web. Chapter III: the research: methodology in the case of the Bicocca In-Formazione community The third chapter describes the quali-quantitative methodology used: on the one hand, it provides a description of the research tools used (observation, focus groups, interviews and questionnaire) and, on the other, it outlines the design of the research. Chapter IV: the research: first stage - building the community The fourth chapter describes the first stage of the research, i.e., building the Bicocca In-Formazione community. This chapter can be divided into two parts: - the first part investigates the needs of degree candidates and graduates for a space to share knowledge and information, constituting a framework for the needs analysis; - the second part deals with the process of building the community. This second part contains: a description of the spaces that comprise the online environment; the selection and training of the moderators; the procedures used for the start-up and launch stages of the teacher community. Chapter V: the research: second stage - monitoring the community The fifth chapter deals with monitoring the community and it can, in turn, be divided into three parts: - using a purely qualitative methodology, the first part studies the evolution of the community and describes both the modifications made to the online environment and the changes in communication strategies; the second part determines the most suitable definition for the type of the “Bicocca In-Formazione” community. The second part can be divided into two sections: the first is more descriptive, examining the reality of the community and analysing its characteristics and structural data; - the second starts from the experimental aspect, implemented through the administration of a questionnaire to degreed members of the community for the purpose of revealing their image of the online community in relation to several main dimensions: goals, participation, responsibilities, relational dynamics and learning; - finally, the third part starts from an analysis of discussions taking place in the forums in an attempt to deduce how the degree course affects the teaching profession, the extent to which the degreed members of the community demonstrate the education imprinting of the Primary Education course followed at Milano-Bicocca University. The debates that developed in the forum are analysed to trace a profile of the teachers participating in the community. Subsequently, in-depth interviews were conducted with several professors of the degree course, examining several discussions related to each instructor's discipline, in order to determine if there were elements in common with the teacher profile drawn. Finally, the data emerging from the qualitative measurements was compared with several items of quantitative data that emerged from the questionnaire. The objective was to understand the relationship between the profession and the Primary Education degree course. The work concludes with an appendix that includes all the models of the tools used.