Experiences of Using Wiki as a Participatory Learning Tool in Teacher Education
Wikis have potential for facilitating learning in the online environment but studies have identified varying degrees of success. The implementation of a new learning management system at the university provided a context for course instructors to explore the potential of web2.0 tools to facilitate collaborative learning. This research sought to understand teacher education students’ experiences of working collaboratively using a wiki as the participatory technological web2.0 tool. The research study involved pre-service education teachers enrolled as either on-campus or distance (flexible) students in a compulsory first year curriculum paper. A quantitative and qualitative methodology was used to determine learner perspectives on working within a collaborative learning space. Working collaboratively using a wiki as a participatory technological tool was new to most pre-service teachers. Results from this study indicated that their experiences towards collaborative learning remained positive despite a number of challenges. Whilst each group’s experiences varied, we identified three contributing factors to pre-service teacher’s use of wiki as a collaborative learning tool. The student experiences were discussed in relation to the three factors supporting the development of collaborative learning: positive relationships, the role of the course instructor, and the web2.0 technology.