With the rapid growth of technology, information has become easily accessible. Our society has both the benefit and the privilege of being able to connect with people from around the world who share similar interests and ideals. More often than not, the answers to all our questions are available through a simple internet search, although, the significant growth of online communities is what’s really bringing the world together. Online communities allow peers to answer questions, which can be extremely motivating for students that are studying through online institutions.
While more and more students are opting to study through online universities as a more affordable solution in comparison to traditional study institutions, there is a growing demand for students to be able to communicate with one another. Furthermore, lecturers also require the ability to communicate with students. Online communities serve as the ideal solution for the expectations of both students and lecturers as a critical aspect of digital learning and a vital element for online class takers. Several online institutions encourage students to make use of available online communities for peer encouragement and suitable mentorship for courses. (1)
The Function Of An Online Community
The main function of online communities is to encourage optimal member engagement. This can be done through routine classes for students, certification programs, and even discussion forums. This function is able to bring members together from all around the world, which will also prevent students from potentially feeling isolated while studying online. In addition to this, the function of an online community is vital for long distance learning as it encourages learning and the sharing of knowledge from outside the class. Even though they are significantly important for online learning institutions, students that are studying at traditional institutions are also able to take advantage of extended support. (2)
Online communities offer students and lecturers a place to communicate and interact with one another. The sharing of knowledge on the shared interests of the members encourages learning and understanding through peer support. These platforms are usually regulated with rules and the behavior of members is also monitored, which means students and lecturers are able to freely discuss study material and problems in a safe manner.
Students can use online community platforms to extend the conversation from the class and pose questions. This will result in optimal understanding for students that may be battling with certain aspects of their studies.
Students that have opted for an online university may eventually feel significantly isolated. This unfortunate problem can be solved with the use of online community platforms as students are able to interact with other students who may be facing similar difficulties. Additionally, interacting with fellow students is vital for peer motivation. Students are enabled to work together and encourage one another to better understand potential difficulties. Peer motivation is often an understated element for students that may feel unable to keep up with their studies.
Lecturers are also able to monitor group discussions and track the progress of students, while also being able to provide essential feedback on group tasks. These platforms enable lecturers to view which students are participating and voice potential concerns. Because students are aware that a lecturer is monitoring the behavior and activity of each member, conflict is less likely to be a concern as students are more determined to remain focused.
Rewards For Participating
Many online community platforms encourage member participation through a certain reward system. Top contributors are often rewarded for their efforts to motivate other students to reach their learning goals, which in turn, motivates members to participate in peer motivation.
The Growing Importance Of Virtual Community Platforms
Online community platforms serve an undeniably important purpose for students studying in various fields, although, they are also becoming vital for organizations around the globe. The mere fact that these platforms have the ability to bring like-minded people together despite geographical borders is more than impressive.
These platforms are not just an ideal and safe place for students to share information and encourage one another towards their learning goals, but they are also significantly suitable for team building efforts for lecturers and students. Because these platforms have developed to promote learning and the sharing of knowledge, it is understandable why they are becoming a suitable solution for students and lecturers. By bringing people together and encouraging peer motivation, online communities are able to significantly improve the functions of online universities.
Ana Miller is a creative writer. Her topics of interest and expertise range from psychology to all sorts of disciplines such as science and news.