The author of this research paper studied how students learn from online medical courses, but also how they are asked to share and contribute. There is a problem that not all students are comfortable with the two-way communication of the internet, termed Web 2.0 in the paper. I completely agree, I find it difficult to interact with the web 2.0 and to open myself up writing a blog. Collaborating online is not the same as in a traditional classroom, there are barriers to interacting on the internet. This paper gathered qualitative survey data from medical students taking online courses as to what barriers are the most prevalent. Reading this study I realized my own insecurities about sharing online are fairly common, I am not alone! The study was completed in 2007 and 2008, I would suggest redoing the study as things have changed rapidly in the Web 2.0 world. I suspect we are all becoming a bit more comfortable and competent at navigating online and sharing our personal stories. The paper pointed out that class size, gender make up, prior face to face interaction with fellow students, structure of the activities, and overall student workload all influenced the amount of online contribution. In summary, the usage of internet collaboration is a good tool for learning, however some students will gain more out of it than others.
Potts, H. W. (2011). Student experiences of creating and sharing material in online learning. Medical Teacher, 33(11), e607-e614. doi:10.3109/0142159X.2011.610839