Collaborative Interaction


Siemens (2008) suggested that some of the acceptance of online education can be accredited to the increase of online collaborative interaction in people’s lives (Laureate Education, Inc., 2008). Norris (2010) lamented that her college education did not provide her with social media education which she felt was vital to compete in today’s world. Loginquitas (2010) reviewed the written work of online collaboration authors Palloff and Pratt and concluded online collaboration is an effective method of providing quality online instruction. Loginquitas traced the development of online collaboration through Palloff and Pratt’s catalog. He suggested that their later works provide evidence of deeper understanding of the educational uses of online collaboration. Garcia (2007) created a timeline that traced the evolution of collaborative online tools and predicted the next wave of changes. He predicted we were at the end of Web 2.0 and about to enter Web 3.0 which is characterized by portable access, cloud computing, and intelligent software.

There are many online collaboration tools that can be used. Palloff and Pratt (2005) assembled a list of collaborative learning activities that included “role playing (p. 57)”, “simulations (p. 60)”, “case studies (p. 63)”, “collaborative discussions (p. 69)”, “dyads (p. 73)”, “small group projects (77)”, “jigsaw activities (p. 79)”, “blogs (p. 80)”, “virtual teams (p. 83)”, “debates (p. 85)”, “fishbowls (p. 87)”, “learning cycles (p. 89)”, and “WebQuests (p. 93)”. Tangient LLC. (2010) have compiled a list of collaborative tools and descriptions on a wiki. Here is a link: College Times (2010) collected 50 collaboration tools as well. Here is a link:

The two blogs I found were:

Norris (2010) suggested that college faculty should demonstrate social networking tools instead of merely mentioning how important they are. She evaluated her social media courses as outdated and believed they were preparing her for the past instead of for the future. Norris’ position reminds us how slow education changes in reaction to new technologies and ideas.

Garcia (2007) predicted that Web 3.0 would be here this year. Many of the features he described as Web 3.0 are indeed here including; the semantic web, smart Internet applications such as Apple’s Genius, and cloud computing. Garcia predicted we were heading toward Web 4.0 in the future. This blog reminds educators that technology is constantly changing. Students need to be educated for the future, not the past.


College Times (2010, April 8). 50 free collaboration tools for education. Retrieved from:

Garcia, F. A. C. (2007, February 9). How the WebOS evolves? Web 2.0 to Web 3.0 and the metaweb. [web log post]. Retrieved from:

Laureate Education, Inc. (2008). The Future of Distance Education. On Principles of Distance Education. Baltimore: Author.

Loginquitas, E. (2010, March 5). Advancing distance learning: The Palloff and Pratt collection [web log post]. Retrieved from:

Norris, M. (2010, September 14). Social media – Why aren’t teachers and students learning it?? [Web log post]. Retrieved from:

Palloff, R. M., & Pratt, K. (2005). Collaborating online: Learning together in community. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Tangient LLC. (2010). Online Collaboration Tools. [wiki post]. Retrieved from: