Clear rules facilitate continued web interaction among general practitioners
Research at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, explores how an online learning community works for a group of general practitioners and shows that clear rules facilitate continued web interaction.
Urban Carlén, Department of Applied Information Technology, has studied how a large group of general practitioners interact via an e-mail list. The list started in 1999 and serves as an online community for exchange of knowledge and experience. The submitted e-mails are distributed to all members of the community.
The participants discuss various topics in different threads, which are then stored in a web archive. In addition to lengthy discussions, participants exchange short information e-mails. In his thesis, Carlén attempted to identify the characteristics of the participants and also investigated the rules all members are obliged to follow. How do participants communicate, and what do they communicate about? And exactly what has made the community last this long?
Carlén concludes that the impressive longevity of the list is mainly a result of the clear rules that all participants have to abide to. The e-mail list is linked to a professional association and has a moderator – the same person as when the list was launched years ago. The association and the moderator manage the online activities and formulate and enforce the rules, which is crucial for the survival of the community. New members are carefully initiated into the community culture and rules, and if a member breaks a rule, he or she is immediately notified of his or her violation. All members are treated the same in this respect, regardless of rank or status.
’The rules are always emphasised and enforced, and I’m sure this explains why the list has been around for such a long time’, says Carlén, ‘It obviously helps keep the overall quality and level of professionalism high. The list has become a reliable means of exchanging professional information among the practitioners. They really appreciate the forum.’
Carlén notes that although the list can be seen as a type of social medium, its content has been strictly professional – at least in the studied years. Thus, the list is an example of a long-lasting community with a large number of members that serves as a social hub – without compromising its level of professionalism.
The thesis has been successfully defended.
Link to thesis http://hdl.handle.net/2077/22326
+46 31-786 2748
+46 31-786 2748
Helena Aaberg | idw
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
Computer scientists use wave packet theory to develop realistic, detailed water wave simulations in real time. Their results will be presented at this year’s SIGGRAPH conference.
Think about the last time you were at a lake, river, or the ocean. Remember the ripples of the water, the waves crashing against the rocks, the wake following...
An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.
Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...
Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.
Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...
Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.
As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...
Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.
With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...