The (Failed) Case of the Winston Society Wikispace: The Challenges and Opportunities of Web 2.0 and Teacher Education

ID: 32158 Type: Roundtable
  1. Jory Brass, University of Cincinnati, United States
  2. Storey Mecoli, Boston College, United States

Friday, March 11 1:30 PM-2:30 PM Location: Bellmeade

No presider for this session.

Abstract: This roundtable presentation examines the case of the Winston Society, a short-lived wikispace created by a high school English teacher to foster collaborative knowledge-making and social activism among practicing teachers. Through an examination of the wiki, questionnaires, and a focal group interview, we examine why the Winston Society garnered limited uptake among classroom teachers. We then draw upon scholarship in the new literacy studies to theorize key issues in the study, including teachers’ discomfort with digital epistemologies and the potential of on-line “affinity spaces” and social media to mediate teachers’ professional development, networking, and political activism. By examining teacher responses, we highlight key issues and tensions that may help educators approach web 2.0 technologies more strategically in other contexts of teacher education.


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