[j50] M. Xenos, N. Avouris, D. Stavrinoudis, and M. Margaritis, Introduction of synchronous peer collaboration activities in a distance learning course, IEEE Transactions in Education, vol. 52 ( 3), Aug. 2009, pp. 305 - 311, DOI: 10.1109/TE.2008.928212 (pdf of early draft)
Abstract This paper presents the main findings and lessons learned from introducing a synchronous peer collaboration activity in a distance learning computer science course. Synergo, a software that supports such an approach was used in this activity. The organizational, technical and academic challenges of introducing this activity in the course are discussed. After analyzing studentsʼ interaction, their views and evaluation of the produced results, it was found that this activity was received positively by the group of students concerned, who engaged in peer tutoring and used it as an opportunity for breaking the isolation of the distance learning setting and for building links among them.