Online Forum Discussion to Promote Sense of Learning Community among the Group Members

  •  Maslawati Mohamad    
  •  Shahizan Shaharuddin    


The integration of e-learning within a distance learning program helps to foster greater interaction among learners who are geographically distant from one another. Various ways have been implemented to achieve this aim, one of which is the use of online forum. Research shows that the use of online forum is capable of fostering a sense of learning community among learners. However, much remains to be known about what happens when adult learners in a distance learning program participate in an online forum as means to improve their reading comprehension in English and promote learning of the subject matter. This article discusses the use of online forum discussion in English for Life Sciences distance learning course. It demonstrates that the online forum discussion practiced in the course was useful in developing a sense of learning community. In this case it can be concluded that knowledge of both the subject matter and the language is constructed collaboratively among the adult learners. The article also discusses the implications of the study for the educators involved.

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